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Author: Subject: The potency of Mozilla + Addons, Questioned
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[*] posted on 4-13-09 at 01:59 AM   «:|:»  Link to post Reply With Quote
The potency of Mozilla + Addons, Questioned



Hey,
I'm currently running Mozilla and a couple of add-on's. Mostly, I'm inquiring about No-script, and other add-ons that block pop-ups, etc. It really does a good job at blocking pop-ups on some websites that others openly complain about, and for this, I have recognized the immediate benefits. But, I'm also interested in how potent this is in blocking the functions of many websites today that run scripts such as snap.com, googleanalytics...and all the other google shit out there, statcounter, and everything else that noscript will block. What exactly does it doe to these websites? NoScript is just one of many Mozilla add-ons, but I've been running it for over a year now, and even when I got a new computer, I chose it over others, simply b/c I knew how to use it, although I don't know what it does. Would it block the functions of these sites until I enable it, or does it allow them to do their job, making me blind to their data collection because of its actions, regardless of my actions?

I wonder about this stuff, just because it seems so easy to "allow googleanalytics" and other scripts, with the click of a button on noscript...often, I will enable a bunch of these blocked scripts while I am trying to watch a video on StumbleVideo, and I just wonder what the consequences of my action were...

Will spyware infect my computer? Will people be able to track my IP/info/stored computer info? Will it add to some "demographics" section of a website? Damn, I sound I like a creep now, and I'm really not, and I'm sure that other Firefox users + Addons aren't either, but I'm really curious about what these Mozilla addons do. I know that Mozilla is no better than IE (minus stumble upon, which has become a staple for me now, and probably a brain-drain), now that it also has tabs, but what are the true benefits of running addons to Mozilla in addition to these add-ons? That was probably the wrong question too, so what do Firefox addons do?



damn, can't find the "what are you listening to right now" thingy...otherwise i'd say.
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[*] posted on 4-13-09 at 10:22 PM   «:|:»  Link to post Reply With Quote


Well, in some sense, blocking the scripts does not really hide you. Just requesting download gives a lot of information. It depends how much control you have over the server. People who use script based trackers tend to not have much control on the server and are forced to. But a lot of sites (like mine), don't need those kinds of things.

To give you a better idea, here is some of the kinds of information that can be collected just by viewing a page, script or not (script only if you have no control on the server):
IP
Location (usually within a zipcode)
Browser
Operating System
Time viewed per page
If the page was bookmarked (not always accurate)
How many times you have visited the page
How you entered the site (ig, direct request, or linked from, or searched google for "this term")

Those are the big ones....my point is, that information is given to the person who owns the server with scripts enabled or disabled. Your only hiding that information from the party who is using the server, but does not own it.

If that makes any sense.

I don't know much about the spyware bits, but that has to do with the analytics software at least. I suppose spyware is possible, but is nothing I worry about.

And to answer your more generic question, a firefox addon can do just about anything you want. You just have to find/make the right one. It is a very robust system and you can do a lot with it, if you spend the effort.


cheers,
jent d-_-b
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[*] posted on 4-18-09 at 12:44 AM   «:|:»  Link to post Reply With Quote


Thanks for the reply, Jent.

So, just to see if my reading comprehension is up to par, script blocking will allow a server to track site statistics, but not a site user? E.g. for somebody blogging on a site that runs scripts, the host would be be able to see your info, but not the particular user whose blog you were visiting?

I guess I'm just using the bare basics of what Firefox can offer, but so far, I've been fine with it. It blocks alot of popups on sites where others complain constantly about popups.

Are there any add-ons that will block info to IP info, etc...I think that's basically the function of certain 'scripts' blocked by no-script. I thought I guess I thought that my IP couldn't be logged by such a site unless I choose to run those scripts.

btw no script is blocking spicylemons.com and den.spicylemons.com right now, but I'm you can probably still log my info, right?
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