Disconnect for Chrome, Firefox, and Safari already protects your privacy and data from prying eyes, but now it keeps your Wi-Fi browsing secure from session hijacking and widgetjacking attacks too! Here's how, and why you'll want to download it right now:
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- That‘s great!Nov 25, 2012
- I KNOW!Nov 25, 2012
- Defensive? Moi? I'm just trying to win an argument on the internet, a fairly pointless sport at the best of times, like say, [insert popular sport here] but a man has to have hobbies :-)
(Yes, I know you edited it to protective, but I'd already written it yesterday while waiting, after getting the email)
You could say I'm picking on Facebook unfairly, but I'm simply following the money.
Knowledge is power, possession of it, (from a corporate perspective) means profit. At least in a world of "big data"
Google is as very large and profitable advertising company, it makes 96-98% of all its income that way. This is all done by automated computer auction, which on its own displays an amazing amount of chutzpah IMO. Not to mention faith in their Chief economist Hal Varian, a noted expert on auction theory. Google chose to IPO via auction and did it themselves, in investment terms they "left a lot of money on the table" meaning they could have achieved a much higher initial stock price had they gone the traditional route via investment bank advisory, etc.
Facebook, chose the investment banking route when it went public. Facebook stock opened at the highest price it has ever had, ($42) and then dropped 50% over the next few weeks to around $20 now. As a private company it didn't have to have a plan, or make much money, (it didn't) As a public company it no longer has that luxury. It needs to turn a profit, it's shareholders will expect/demand that much. There you get into the subjective realm of value, what, when you get right down to it, does Facebook have to sell?
The answer, besides the obvious talent of Mark Zuckerberg and his minions and executives, is that Facebook can sell metadata from the text, pictures, and crucially, the connections that almost 1bn people have given to them in exchange for the free use of the Facebook platform. The key word here is the word "monetise" how does Facebook plan to monetise the data of its users?
Now admittedly, this is more of a subjective discussion than may appear warranted on the back of a simple plugin, and it does largely come down to a divide between those that use Facebook, and generally lack a deep understanding of computers, and those that do have a good understanding of technology and use Google. But this is where the notion of privacy, and profit motive collide. Privacy in the original sense of actually having something to hide, or things we wish only certain people to know. (Like the fact that you're pregnant) as per a link a couple of replies back, or you have a medical condition, (HIV) or any number of other personal details or quirks, (sexual or religious persuasion, political views, etc.) Some of which you may be happy talking about, some not. Then there is the matter of profit. If somebody is going to profit from this information, why shouldn't it be you? Ceteris paribus obviously, "all other things being equal"
Do not misunderstand me, I'm talking about Facebook as they have something to sell, they need to show a profit, while Google already has something to sell; eyeballs, other people's attention. They already profit from that. What Google needs to do is get people reading, including here on Google plus, on mobile, and eventually everywhere, (Google Glass) but the nature of the threat, and thus the harm, is somewhat quantifiable in Google's case, and I don't trust them either. With Facebook, the nature and quantity of the profit is as yet unknown, hence the harm is less quantifiable.
Disconnect doesn't just target Facebook, I'd does Google, twitter, yahoo! & linked-in too. In an earlier release they allowed you to block the Google cookie, this blocked access to gmail. This meant I had to use an insecure browser, (IE) to read my email. This annoyed a lot of people, hence the bit in the video about "not breaking the web" privacy in this environment is always a trade-off.
Nor do I think that anything I say will change anyone's mind, at best all any argument does is allow you to hone your own opinion, into a more cogent form. "If you want to understand anything, try explaining it to somebody else", perhaps especially somebody hostile to your opinion. They will ask questions, you will have to find answers.
As to the Wiley "hacker" nothing you can do will protect you against them, certainly not a privacy plugin. Something best expressed in the song, "Shape of my heart" by Sting. Which from memory goes like this.
"He deals the cards as a meditation,
And those he plays never suspect,
He doesn't play for the money he wins,
He doesn't play for respect.
He deals the card to find the answer,
The sacred geometry of chance,
The hidden law of the probable outcome,
The numbers lead a dance."
The stereotypical security professional who stands watch over the digital battlements, works eight hours, interrupted frequently, and then goes home. The stereotypical Wiley hacker sits in his mom's basement and tries to break in for 12-18 hours a time or more with few interruptions. The best anyone can do is spot the intrusion, kick the hacker out and patch the hole.
It's a numbers game, that and there are always security flaws that will yield to careful study. If you have the time you may want to check out the idea of correctness in computer programming, it's impossible to write a program longer than three lines, that is provably "bug free"
As I said at the start the only defence is defence in depth and to remove the low hanging fruit. This approach works just as well with digital miscreants as with people who would invade your privacy for profit. The first step to that is understanding the terrain. Disconnect as a plugin provides one layer of defence It is not foolproof nothing is, but as a fire and forget solution it works well.
You could also try the collusion tool, available from the same place, if you want a true glimpse into how tracked you are online. Gives you new sites to add to your adblock custom filter list, if nothing else.Nov 25, 2012
- ok fuck this im not reading all that byeNov 27, 2012
- Nov 27, 2012
- lol thats youNov 27, 2012