Privacy add-ons merged to create powerful tool for Web browsers

TACO with Abine blocks tracking from 95 advertising networks and shows users how they're tracked by Web sites

A browser extension for Firefox has been combined with a set of privacy applications that give users more control over how their personal information is shared online.

The extension is the Targeted Advertising Cookie Opt-Out or TACO, developed by Christopher Soghoian. TACO is aimed at stopping online advertising networks from setting cookies, or small data files, on a person's computer that record information about their Web surfing, which can the be used to serve targeted advertisements.

Many of the online advertising companies offer an "opt-out" cookie, which will exempt a particular user from being tracked, but the user often must visit a Web site in order to obtain that cookie, according to Soghoian's Web site. Also, if a user inadvertently deletes the cookie, in some cases they may have to go to obtain specific opt-out cookies again.

The latest 3.0 version of TACO can now block a total of 95 advertising networks. It also shows more granular detail on what tracking systems Web sites are using and displays them in a console when a person visits a new Web page. Further controls allow people to block particular tracking systems while allowing others. TACO 3.0 can also show if the site has had a recent data breach.

Soghoian has also partnered with Abine, a company started in 2008 that specializes in creating consumer privacy applications that have have been wrapped into the extension. Albine built privacy extensions for both Firefox and Internet Explorer.

Albine's privacy applications have been combined with TACO into a powerful extension that can let users manage and block Flash cookies, other JavaScript-based tracking methods, HTTP cookies, a password management feature and a way to auto-fill in forms using a preconfigured set of identity information, among others.

"Abine has the resources necessary to keep improving TACO, maintain the opt-out cookie list, and add other innovative features to enable users to protect themselves from online targeting and tracking," according to Soghoian. "They'll be able to provide the kind of frequent updates, ongoing support and development that users expect from the software tools they trust."

TACO 3.0 with Albine can also block single-sign on features such as Facebook Connect. Albine's software also allows people to control their Facebook privacy settings through the extension.

Albine is in beta and requires an invitation which can be obtained through the company's Web site. The company plans to make money by offering other services connected with its application, such as fast proxies, premium e-mail and phone features.

Send news tips and comments to jeremy_kirk@idg.com

Join the newsletter!

Error: Please check your email address.
Rocket to Success - Your 10 Tips for Smarter ERP System Selection

Tags internet privacymozilla firefox

Keep up with the latest tech news, reviews and previews by subscribing to the Good Gear Guide newsletter.

Jeremy Kirk

IDG News Service
Show Comments

Cool Tech

Breitling Superocean Heritage Chronographe 44

Learn more >

SanDisk MicroSDXC™ for Nintendo® Switch™

Learn more >

Toys for Boys

Family Friendly

Panasonic 4K UHD Blu-Ray Player and Full HD Recorder with Netflix - UBT1GL-K

Learn more >

Stocking Stuffer

Razer DeathAdder Expert Ergonomic Gaming Mouse

Learn more >

Christmas Gift Guide

Click for more ›

Most Popular Reviews

Latest Articles

Resources

PCW Evaluation Team

Edwina Hargreaves

WD My Cloud Home

I would recommend this device for families and small businesses who want one safe place to store all their important digital content and a way to easily share it with friends, family, business partners, or customers.

Walid Mikhael

Brother QL-820NWB Professional Label Printer

It’s easy to set up, it’s compact and quiet when printing and to top if off, the print quality is excellent. This is hands down the best printer I’ve used for printing labels.

Ben Ramsden

Sharp PN-40TC1 Huddle Board

Brainstorming, innovation, problem solving, and negotiation have all become much more productive and valuable if people can easily collaborate in real time with minimal friction.

Sarah Ieroianni

Brother QL-820NWB Professional Label Printer

The print quality also does not disappoint, it’s clear, bold, doesn’t smudge and the text is perfectly sized.

Ratchada Dunn

Sharp PN-40TC1 Huddle Board

The Huddle Board’s built in program; Sharp Touch Viewing software allows us to easily manipulate and edit our documents (jpegs and PDFs) all at the same time on the dashboard.

George Khoury

Sharp PN-40TC1 Huddle Board

The biggest perks for me would be that it comes with easy to use and comprehensive programs that make the collaboration process a whole lot more intuitive and organic

Featured Content

Product Launch Showcase

Latest Jobs

Don’t have an account? Sign up here

Don't have an account? Sign up now

Forgot password?