TrackMeNot is a lightweight browser extension that helps protect web searchers from surveillance and data-profiling by search engines.
It does so not by means of concealment or encryption (i.e. covering one's tracks), but instead, paradoxically, by the opposite strategy: noise and obfuscation. With TrackMeNot, actual web searches, lost in a cloud of false leads, are essentially hidden in plain view. User-installed TrackMeNot works with Firefox and Chrome browsers and popular search engines (AOL, Yahoo!, Google, and Bing) and requires no 3rd-party servers or services.
How It Works:
TrackMeNot runs in Firefox and Chrome as a low-priority background process that periodically issues randomized search-queries to popular search engines, e.g., AOL, Yahoo!, Google, and Bing. It hides users' actual search trails in a cloud of 'ghost' queries, significantly increasing the difficulty of aggregating such data into accurate or identifying user profiles. To better simulate user behavior TrackMeNot uses a dynamic query mechanism to 'evolve' each client (uniquely) over time, parsing the results of its searches for 'logical' future query terms with which to replace those already used.
Note: TrackMeNot is user-installed and user-managed (integrating into the Firefox 'Tools' menu and including a variety of easily configurable options). Once downloaded, it resides wholly on users' system and functions without the need for 3rd-party servers or services. Placing users in full control is an essential feature of TMN, whose purpose is to protect against the unilateral policies set by search companies in their handling of our personal information.
- Possibility to add/delete search engines
- A list of keywords monitored by DHS (default: off)
- New HTML interface with more options
- Option to run TMN in a dedicated tab
- Restart no longer required
- Minor bug fixes
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