Another Google Privacy Issue?

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Another Google Privacy Issue?

Postby tacoma43 » Thu May 26, 2011 9:22 am

Whenever I start a Firefox browser session, my Google Toolbar "calls home" and downloads a 1.35 kb text/html file:

Code: Select all
http://www.google.com/tbproxy/getaccountinfo?key=[a 13-digit number]


Opening the file generates a 400 Bad Request error.

The numbers run sequentially so I assume they represent the total number of times a browser session is started with the Toolbar installed. According to two such files in my cache, Google currently is getting 1000 hits per second.

Is this just a means of measuring world-wide Toolbar use, or is Google using these unique files to track browser activity? :shock:
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Re: Another Google Privacy Issue?

Postby AlphaCentauri » Thu May 26, 2011 12:30 pm

I don't know what the Google toolbar is supposed to do other than track users. Why do people install it?
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Re: Another Google Privacy Issue?

Postby tacoma43 » Thu May 26, 2011 4:46 pm

Ah-ah-AH — I asked my question first!
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Re: Another Google Privacy Issue?

Postby spamislame » Thu May 26, 2011 4:55 pm

I would wager toolbar usage.

If you log in to gmail and look at login details, it will tell you (among other things) what client you used to login to it with. POP3, web browser and toolbar are all options. It also likely tracks overall toolbar usage.

Keep in mind that everything you do is tracked online. Web logs contain a boatload of data about what browser you used to visit the website they're logging, in which country, from which IP address, etc.

I fail to see either of these things as a Big Brother scenario. They've been around for decades.

If they were tracking something more nefarious like what credit card you used to purchase something (which is never logged as part of a website transaction, only on the back end of a credit card form) you'd have something.

Besides: that's what stealth trojan keyloggers are for. ;)

SiL
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Re: Another Google Privacy Issue?

Postby Red Dwarf » Thu May 26, 2011 10:04 pm

If I installed every toolbar that various programs have offered, I would have to buy a bigger screen so I could see the actual web page.

:tool: bah!
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