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Posted: 6:00 a.m. Friday, July 26, 2013

How to limit online tracking

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By Clark Howard

ClarkHoward.com


Are you concerned with all the discussion about online tracking by the government and private industry? There are some simple steps you can take to limit it.

The use of cookies to track your web browsing and serve up relevant ads is one of the easiest things to stop. For example, Firefox has Do Not Track capability that you can easily activate in their browser.

Ad Block Plus will also help you block spying and online tracking when you’re surfing around, and it’s available for many popular browsers.

But the greatest breach of your privacy is through smartphones. They are a gold mine for people looking to track you, dissect who are, and sell to you. In fact, you have to go back to using a feature phone if you want to avoid data miners.

If you really want to go off the grid, use a feature phone like an older flip-phone, use cash instead of credit or debit, and don’t surf the web. There are less extreme ways to mitigate and limit tracking too. For example, you might segregate your emails and/or browsers -- one e-mail for social media, another for e-commerce, another for news and info sites, etc.

You do have choices if you want to take some control. It’s only a question of how much control you want to take…

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