Privacy Software Roundup 2011, Part 1: Browser Tools

February 21, 2011
Adblock (Plus)
Two variants of a tool that removes advertising from the webpages you view, and blocks all known malware domains.
  • Adblock is available for Safari and Chrome.
  • Adblock Plus is available for Firefox and Chrome, and also offers the EasyPrivacy tool: "an optional supplementary subscription that completely removes all forms of tracking from the internet, including web bugs, tracking scripts and information collectors."
Ghostery by Evidon
"Ghostery allows you to detect trackers on the sites you visit, learn more about the companies behind them, and control their visibility into your online behavior." Blocking is also available as an experimental feature. Turn it on in settings, or during the installation wizard.

Google Analytics Opt-out Browser Add-on by Google
"The add-on communicates with the Google Analytics JavaScript (ga.js) to indicate that information about the website visit should not be sent to Google Analytics."

Google Advertising Cookie Opt-out Plugin by Google
"With this browser plugin you can permanently opt out of the DoubleClick cookie, which is an advertising cookie that Google uses. The plugin lets you keep your opt-out status for this browser even when you clear all cookies."

TrackerBlock by PrivacyChoice
"Opts you out permanently from behavioral ad targeting by over 150 companies. While this does not block tracking, in many cases (but not all) these companies will refrain from collecting information from your computer when the opt-out is in place."

PrivacyMark by PrivacyChoice
Like TrackerBlock, but not an add-on/plugin/extension. "Save the Privacy Mark in your bookmarks or favorites and you can opt-out of ad targeting by over 100 companies. Click on it any time to update your optouts. No add-on required."

TrackerScan by PrivacyChoice
"Monitor privacy while you surf. See who's tracking on any webpage and how they use your data." See examples.

For Firefox Only:

Beef Taco by jmhobbs
A Firefox add-on to opt-out of ad networks.

BetterPrivacy by NettiCat
"Better Privacy serves to protect against undeletable longterm cookies (LSO Flash Objects, DOM Storage Objects), a new generation of 'Super-Cookie', which silently conquered the Internet. This new cookie generation offers unlimited user tracking to industry and market research."

HTTPS Everywhere by the Electronic Frontier Foundation
A Firefox extension produced as a collaboration between The Tor Project and the Electronic Frontier Foundation. It encrypts your communications with a number of major websites.

NoScript by InformAction
"This add-on provides extra protection for Firefox, Seamonkey and other mozilla-based browsers: this free, open source add-on allows JavaScript, Java and Flash and other plugins to be executed only by trusted web sites of your choice (e.g. your online bank), and provides the most powerful Anti-XSS protection available in a browser."

For Chrome Only:

Disconnect by Brian Kennish
"A browser extension for Chrome and RockMelt that stops major third parties and search engines
from tracking the webpages you go to and searches you do."

Keep My Opt-Outs by Google
"An extension for users who aren’t comfortable with personalization of the ads they see on the web. It’s a one-step, persistent opt-out of personalized advertising and related data tracking performed by companies adopting the industry privacy standards for online advertising."

NotScripts by Optimal Cycling Project
"A Google Chrome extension that gives “NoScript”-like functionality ... greater control over what javascript, iframes, and plugins run in your browser to increase security and lower the CPU usage. NotScripts can help to mitigate attacks like cross-site scripting (XSS) and drive by downloads by giving you control over what third-party javascript and content loads on the sites you visit." A version for Opera is also available.

Do you have any to add? Leave a comment.
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