What is Browser Fingerprinting and How to Prevent It?

WordPress Security 6 min read
Last Update on January 14, 2023

Browser fingerprinting is the process of gathering information about a computer so that it can be identified. It can tell websites how a person browses, what device they’re using, what fonts they’re using, etc.

It is a powerful and unique way to get all the information about the sites you visit that your device sends to the receiving server.

What is Browser Fingerprinting

Websites then use this information to figure out who each user is and keep track of what they do online. The name for this is “browser fingerprinting.”

You can do a few things or take a few steps to stop someone from getting your browser’s fingerprint. We’ll talk about the most important ones in this guide.

How to Prevent Browser Fingerprinting

Here are some things you can do to stop hackers or even websites from getting your browser’s fingerprint:

Use a VPN to Hide Browsing Activity

The first thing you should do to stop people from getting your browser’s fingerprint or following what you do online is to get a VPN.

It is a tool for protecting your privacy online. When you connect to one of its servers, everything you do on the internet stays secret. In fact, it encrypts your internet traffic and sends it through encrypted tunnels that keep hackers, ISPs, and even the government from seeing your data.

You are connected to a VPN server that is also being used by thousands of other VPN users. When you go to a website, they won’t be able to tell which one you went to because the traffic stays encrypted.

It also hides your real IP address forever and gives you a new IP address that thousands of other VPN users are also using. This makes it impossible to keep track of what you do on the internet.

ExpressVPN is one of the best VPNs on the market right now in terms of security, speed, performance, and trust. You can try ExpressVPN before buying it by signing up for a free trial subscription.

Use Incognito Mode

Using a browser’s “incognito mode” is another way to keep people from keeping track of what you do online.

It’s a feature that’s built into every browser these days, and it doesn’t reveal anything about the user or their browser, device, etc.

Since many people use “private browsing” and its settings, the website wouldn’t be able to tell them apart. Websites won’t be able to keep track of what you do online because your fingerprints will look the same as everyone else’s.

Use a Tor Browser

You can also keep your web browsing safe by using a Tor browser. The Onion Router, or Tor for short, stops JavaScript codes from running on your browser. This keeps browser fingerprinting from happening.

Using a VPN with a Tor browser is a very cool thing to do. But it could be very slow because the encryption will be so strong.

Use an Ad blocker Extension

Using an ad blocker is another way to prevent websites from tracking your online activities. They don’t just block ads; they also stop any script that could be used to find out everything about how you browse.

Some browser add-ons, like Adblock Plus, NoScript, Privacy Badger, etc., are made to stop these scripts from running on your browser.

Some websites that make money by putting ads on their pages might make you stop or turn off these plugins. Because of these plugins, you might not be able to stream or browse perfectly on some websites.

Disable JavaScript

Websites often use information from JavaScript to put cookies on your browser. So, they can tell what browser you are using, what font you are using, what device you are using, and most likely what you are doing while you are browsing.

What would happen if you turned off JavaScript? None of this would happen. If you turn off JavaScript, the website won’t be able to find active plugins or, more importantly, install cookies.

Even though this will help you stop your browser from leaving a trace, it also has some bad effects. A website won’t be able to function properly without JavaScript.

Flash is another plugin you might want to turn off. This wouldn’t affect streaming or anything else unless you went to a very old website that still uses flash.

Key Takeaways

On the internet, every cybercriminal wants to steal your personal information. They want to know what you’re looking at on the internet, what device you’re using, what browser you’re using, and a lot more.

Even the websites you visit want to know everything they can about you. So they can figure out what you’re looking for on the internet and market to you better.

You can still protect yourself and your browsing history from all of these facts. The best way is to use a VPN, which I’ve talked about in this guide. You can also use a Tor browser, think about browsing in Incognito mode, turn off JavaScript, and do a lot more.

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