"Meta injecting code into websites visited by its users to track them"

omahaaudio

Friend of Leo's
Joined
Mar 21, 2015
Posts
4,207
Location
France
Meta, the owner of Facebook and Instagram, has been rewriting websites its users visit, letting the company follow them across the web after they click links in its apps, according to new research from an ex-Google engineer.

The two apps have been taking advantage of the fact that users who click on links are taken to webpages in an “in-app browser”, controlled by Facebook or Instagram, rather than sent to the user’s web browser of choice, such as Safari or Firefox.

“The Instagram app injects their tracking code into every website shown, including when clicking on ads, enabling them [to] monitor all user interactions, like every button and link tapped, text selections, screenshots, as well as any form inputs, like passwords, addresses and credit card numbers,” says Felix Krause, a privacy researcher who founded an app development tool acquired by Google in 2017.

In a statement, Meta said that injecting a tracking code obeyed users’ preferences on whether or not they allowed apps to follow them, and that it was only used to aggregate data before being applied for targeted advertising or measurement purposes for those users who opted out of such tracking.

- The Guardian
 

unixfish

Doctor of Teleocity
Silver Supporter
Joined
Apr 20, 2013
Posts
16,426
Location
Northeast Ohio, USA
Yep. When the center of your universe is Facebook, they can control your every key click. This is not new - sites have been doing this for a long time. You are always better to type the site you want to visit in the URL bar rather than relying on a link on a web page (if you don't verify the link first).

Ease of use often equates to captured data.

Every ad you click on sends money to the host. Facebook is just taking this to the next level for more income.
 

blowtorch

Telefied
Ad Free Member
Joined
May 2, 2003
Posts
39,665
Location
Wisco
IT'S GOOD THAT META DOES THAT
1660243821586.png
 

The Angle

Tele-Afflicted
Joined
Dec 19, 2017
Posts
1,472
Location
Seattle, WA
Every ad you click on sends money to the host. Facebook is just taking this to the next level for more income.
In fact, they're probably taking it to the next level of stealing revenue from the third-party site. I suspect they're showing you that site's proprietary content but inserting their own ads and taking all the revenue from views or clicks. I'm a little surprised this kind of site-scraping isn't already illegal. If it isn't, I hope it is soon.
 

RetiredUnit1

Tele-Holic
Joined
Jun 18, 2022
Posts
829
Age
66
Location
SoCal
As a programmer, I'd say the loaded words in the description go way beyond what can actually occur. Yeah they'll follow anyWAY they can, don't use that browser....

but injecting code? NO....

"code injecting" on secure unix servers that populate the internet is NOT feasible for lots of boring reasons you wouldn't want or need to read so I'll not go there.

This sounds like a reporter with an overactive imagination with an issue to grind. Not that Meta doesn't deserve grinding. I'm HERE 'cuz I cannot stand Facebook or the nasty man that stole his roommates idea.
 

buster poser

Poster Extraordinaire
Joined
May 1, 2018
Posts
6,921
Location
Tewa Land NM

unixfish

Doctor of Teleocity
Silver Supporter
Joined
Apr 20, 2013
Posts
16,426
Location
Northeast Ohio, USA
As a programmer, I'd say the loaded words in the description go way beyond what can actually occur. Yeah they'll follow anyWAY they can, don't use that browser....

but injecting code? NO....

"code injecting" on secure unix servers that populate the internet is NOT feasible for lots of boring reasons you wouldn't want or need to read so I'll not go there.

This sounds like a reporter with an overactive imagination with an issue to grind. Not that Meta doesn't deserve grinding. I'm HERE 'cuz I cannot stand Facebook or the nasty man that stole his roommates idea.

I was thinking "injecting code" was used to scare people - they are not injecting, but trapping you in a windows (sort of like a frame?) so they control your use. Colloquial injecting... :twisted:
 

RetiredUnit1

Tele-Holic
Joined
Jun 18, 2022
Posts
829
Age
66
Location
SoCal
I was thinking "injecting code" was used to scare people - they are not injecting, but trapping you in a windows (sort of like a frame?) so they control your use. Colloquial injecting... :twisted:
Well, yeah. computers don't have arms or legs than can be injected. They don't have open holes where code can just slip in. So colloquial? I suppose.

But it's just cookies. Cookies are just a file with the stuff in it that a site has asked you for, or they could be your shopping cart. They could be your encrypted "remember me" password, so you don't have to enter your password every time you visit a site.

They (meta and other's wishing to profit from selling or using your demographics) just go along for the ride and scan the cookie directory on a continual basis (slowing your system down for their profit) and when they see a new entry not scanned the previous time or see the 'last updated' entry has changed on a previously existing cookie then they read that cookie to see where you got it.

I programmed for almost 50 years so I don't think of systems in 'human' terms. But there is nothing 'injected', it's all read-only.
 

FuzzWatt

Tele-Holic
Joined
Jan 23, 2020
Posts
701
Location
Bullshitston
I always figured I'm far too boring for any cyber opts folks behind the digital curtain to be interested in anyways.

Sure, they might be able to see that I visit TDPRI, spend way too much time window shopping for gear, and read the occasional news story. Probably bore them to death if anything.
 

imwjl

Doctor of Teleocity
Joined
Mar 21, 2007
Posts
12,544
Location
My mom's basement.
Enjoy Chrome and MS Edge! Diversity in browsers is essential to privacy.
Edge better than Chrome. A combo iPhone and Mac user has the easiest simple solution for better privacy along with features no other platform has. Features good enough to impact Meta's bottom line. In past posts I highlighted the important Facebook settings for cross or other site browsing. Everyone should do that.
 




Top