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The Hacker News - Cybersecurity News and Analysis: online tracking

New Browser Attack Allows Tracking Users Online With JavaScript Disabled

New Browser Attack Allows Tracking Users Online With JavaScript Disabled

March 11, 2021Ravie Lakshmanan
Researchers have discovered a new side-channel that they say can be reliably exploited to leak information from web browsers that could then be leveraged to track users even when JavaScript is completely disabled. "This is a side-channel attack which doesn't require any JavaScript to run," the researchers said. "This means script blockers cannot stop it. The attacks work even if you strip out all of the fun parts of the web browsing experience. This makes it very difficult to prevent without modifying deep parts of the operating system." In avoiding JavaScript, the side-channel attacks are also architecturally agnostic, resulting in microarchitectural website fingerprinting attacks that work across hardware platforms, including Intel Core, AMD Ryzen, Samsung Exynos 2100, and Apple M1 CPUs — making it the first known side-channel attack on the iPhone maker's new ARM-based chipsets. The  findings , which come from a group of academics from the Ben-Gurion U
Bug in Apple's Find My Feature Could've Exposed Users' Location Histories

Bug in Apple's Find My Feature Could've Exposed Users' Location Histories

March 05, 2021Ravie Lakshmanan
Cybersecurity researchers on Thursday disclosed two distinct design and implementation flaws in Apple's crowdsourced Bluetooth location tracking system that can lead to a location correlation attack and unauthorized access to the location history of the past seven days, thereby deanonymizing users. The  findings  are a consequence of an exhaustive review undertaken by the Open Wireless Link (OWL) project, a team of researchers from the Secure Mobile Networking Lab at the Technical University of Darmstadt, Germany, who have historically taken apart Apple's wireless ecosystem with the goal of identifying security and privacy issues. In response to the disclosures on July 2, 2020, Apple is said to have partially addressed the issues, stated the researchers, who used their own data for the study citing privacy implications of the analysis. How Find My Works? Apple devices come with a feature called  Find My  that makes it easy for users to locate other Apple devices, including
Online Trackers Increasingly Switching to Invasive CNAME Cloaking Technique

Online Trackers Increasingly Switching to Invasive CNAME Cloaking Technique

February 24, 2021Ravie Lakshmanan
With browser makers steadily clamping down on third-party tracking, advertising technology companies are increasingly embracing a DNS technique to evade such defenses, thereby posing a threat to web security and privacy. Called  CNAME Cloaking , the practice of blurring the distinction between first-party and third-party cookies not only results in leaking sensitive private information without users' knowledge and consent but also "increases [the] web security threat surface," said a group of researchers Yana Dimova, Gunes Acar, Lukasz Olejnik, Wouter Joosen, and Tom Van Goethem in a new study. "This tracking scheme takes advantage of a CNAME record on a subdomain such that it is same-site to the including web site," the researchers  said  in the paper. "As such, defenses that block third-party cookies are rendered ineffective." The findings are expected to be presented in July at the 21st Privacy Enhancing Technologies Symposium (PETS 2021). Rise
Firefox 69 Now Blocks 3rd-Party Tracking Cookies and Cryptominers By Default

Firefox 69 Now Blocks 3rd-Party Tracking Cookies and Cryptominers By Default

September 04, 2019Swati Khandelwal
Mozilla has finally enabled the "Enhanced Tracking Protection" feature for all of its web browser users worldwide by default with the official launch of Firefox 69 for Windows, Mac, Linux, and Android. The company enabled the " Enhanced Tracking Protection " setting by default for its browser in June this year, but only for new users who downloaded and installed a fresh copy of Firefox. Remaining users were left with options to either enable the feature manually or wait for the company to activate it for all users. Now, the wait is over. With Firefox 69, Enhanced Tracking Protection will automatically be turned on by default for all users as part of the "Standard" setting in the Firefox browser, blocking known "third-party tracking cookies" and web-based cryptocurrency mining scripts. Firefox 69 By Default Blocks Known Third-Party Tracking Cookies Cookies are created by a web browser when a user loads a specific website, which helps
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Learn Python Programming – 7 Courses Video Training Bundle

January 24, 2019The Hacker News
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Apple Blocks Sites From Abusing HSTS Security Standard to Track Users

Apple Blocks Sites From Abusing HSTS Security Standard to Track Users

March 20, 2018Swati Khandelwal
If you are unaware, the security standard HTTP Strict Transport Security (HSTS) can be abused as a 'supercookie' to surreptitiously track users of almost every modern web browser online without their knowledge even when they use "private browsing." Apple has now added mitigations to its open-source browser infrastructure WebKit that underpins its Safari web browser to prevent HSTS abuse after discovering that theoretical attacks demonstrated in 2015 were recently deployed in the wild against Safari users. HSTS—HTTP Strict Transport Security—is a great feature that allows websites to automatically redirects user's web traffic to secure page connections over HTTPS if the user accidentally opens an insecure URL and then remembers to route that user to the secure connection always. Since HSTS does not allow websites to store any information/value on users web browser except remembering the redirect information about turning it on/off for future use, using
Firefox 58 to Block Canvas Browser Fingerprinting By Default to Stop Online Tracking

Firefox 58 to Block Canvas Browser Fingerprinting By Default to Stop Online Tracking

October 31, 2017Mohit Kumar
Do you know? Thousands of websites use HTML5 Canvas —a method supported by all major browsers that allow websites to dynamically draw graphics on web pages—to track and potentially identify users across the websites by secretly fingerprinting their web browsers. Over three years ago, the concern surrounding browser fingerprinting was highlighted by computer security experts from Princeton University and KU Leuven University in Belgium. In 2014, the researchers demonstrated how browser's native Canvas element can be used to draw unique images to assign each user's device a number (a fingerprint) that uniquely identifies them. These fingerprints are then used to detect when that specific user visits affiliated websites and create a profile of the user's web browsing habits, which is then shared among advertising partners for targeted advertisements. Since then many third-party plugins and add-ons (ex. Canvas Defender ) emerged online to help users identify and block
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