posted at 03:50
Author: Richard Byrne Reilly
Wed, 30 Jul 2014 10:00:55 +0000
Canvas fingerprinting is tracking you, and you dont even know what it is
Popular, heavily trafficked websites are increasingly turning to "Canvas fingerprinting" in order to track your online movements. "Canvas fingerprinting is the act of extracting information from a user's browser and using it paint a semi-unique identifiable token. The method requires the use of HTML5, which is a commonly used standard today, being used from making web apps to games," Kujawa said. According to the researchers, canvas fingerprinting is in use on over 5,000 of the world's most trafficked websites, including the White House, porn sites, and others. The shocker for the researchers is that while standard cookies, primarily on desktop, have long tracked your movements, with users being able to opt out with ad-blocking software, canvas fingerprinting actually takes control away from the users and is virtually impossible to detect. Kujawa said canvas fingerprinting identifiers reside in your browser. "Utilizing a script to execute the algorithm from multiple websites can create a new method of tracking users without using cookies." Kujawa said canvas fingerprinting does have its flaws and isn't impervious to those using the right tools to block it. "Because of these issues, canvas fingerprinting in its current state might not be adopted as widely as a lot of folks believe, however the initial research into the technology will no doubt spawn additional development in new ways to track users," Kujawa said.

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