We are all very familiar with the notion that major data brokers like Facebook, Google and Microsoft are gathering loads of personal data about us. Every day we read news stories about it and we are surprised when Facebook is suddenly recommending advertisements for a product we just talked about with our friends an hour ago.
No Facebook, I am not interested in buying that organic gourmet cat food. They must have heard me tell my friend that I could cat-sit for her next weekend.
It's as if there were an advertiser following you around and taking notes on everything you say, and everywhere you go. It doesn't seem to bother younger generations. "What's wrong with being shown ads that I am more likely to relate to?"
It may not seem like a big deal until you really start to look at all the information that your average website can collect from you. With today's cool site, we can do just that.
What a website can learn about you from just one visit
The folks over at Tenta VPN created an interesting landing page to promote their VPN Browser. VPN stands for Virtual Private Network. Systems like the Tenta VPN browser are used by businesses and security advocates around the world in order to block websites from tracking certain information.
But what information does your average website learn from you? On the Tenta test page, you can see it all.
So, of course, other websites have access to our IP address, but what can they learn from that?
- Computer OS
- Browser version
- Flash version
- internet service provider
- Plugin selections
- every installed font
- computer monitor settings
- DNS settings
- Name router is registered under
- exact physical address of router
- Latitude and Longitude of location
...and much more
If you do not understand what some of these things are, the website explains them all in great detail.
It is shocking to see the wealth of information that you provide every single website you visit. Tenta hopes that upon seeing this information, you will be interested in their VPN Browser. This note to visitors is displayed in plain view on their site:
This web app does not collect or monitor your data. We offer it free with zero spammy ads. In return, we hope you check out Tenta VPN Browser. It's our mission to redefine private browsing and if you're using this free web app, then you'll love our approach to building a browser that protects your data instead of selling it.