How to block fingerprints in Firefox

Fingerprinting is a new way to track your online usage. Discover what this is and how you can make Firefox block it.

How to block fingerprints in Firefox
Fingerprinting is a new way to track your online usage. Discover what this is and how you can make Firefox block it.

Have you ever wondered why you see the same online ad everywhere? You are visiting a social networking site, there is the advertisement. You visit online news sources, there it is again. How that works is through a technique called fingerprinting.

With fingerprints, companies create a unique profile of your computer, the software you use, the browser add-ons you have installed and even your preferences such as the screen used, installed fonts and the choice of web browser. This is done using a specific type of tracking that differs from the standard tracking or cookies.

SEE: Mastermind scammer behind Catch Me If You Can talks about cyber security (TechRepublic download)

Making a fingerprint of a user is not nearly as easy when using frequently used applications and settings. If you deviate from the norm, fingerprints can easily be linked to your computer. With a clear fingerprint, marketers can then bombard you with advertisements. Fortunately, the latest version of Firefox has a new feature that prevents ad trackers from fingerprinting you.

How to enable Firefox fingerprint block

The new fingerprint lock out of the box must be switched on. However, you may want to check. To do this, proceed as follows:

  1. Open Firefox.
  2. Click the menu button and then click Preferences.
  3. In the resulting window, click Privacy and security.
  4. Click to expand the Standard option under Enhanced Tracking Protection.
  5. You should see that Fingerprinters is listed. If this is not the case, you are probably using an outdated version of Firefox.

Make sure you upgrade to the latest release and Fingerprinting must then be included. How do you know if fingerprint recognition works? Go to a site and then click the Information button on the left side of the address bar. If fingerprints are detected in the drop-down list, they are listed in the Allowed section.

You may need to temporarily disable Tracking Protection for a site to appear. But as soon as you see it, you know that fingerprints work and can be blocked with Firefox.

Remember that if you have temporarily disabled Tracking Protection, you must re-enable it. You do not want to make yourself vulnerable to any form of tracking.

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