Last updated: September 27th, 2013
With the latest technologies being used by top web services nowadays, protecting your data and information online is not as easy as before. Aside from those web services, using mobile phones can also expose your information.
Search Engines and Web Browsers
Search engine giants like Google and Bing tend to track your usage data and search queries. They use this information to improve business and attract more advertisers.
Web browsers like Chrome and Opera also do the same like search engines. They will track everything you do while using their browsers to make their advertising more targeted. That means they’ll also attract more advertisers.
Emails and Social Media
Top email services like Gmail and Hotmail track every word your send and receive. If you notice it, when using your email, every ads on your screen is related to your emails. Not every email services do this; there are some services that comply with government requests.
Facebook and Google earn billions from advertising and they do everything they can to attract more advertisers. While Facebook and Google are free to use, they may steal and information and sell it to advertisers. Both companies say that they don’t do it, but they face multiple lawsuits about violating users’ privacy.
The Rise of Smartphones
How many apps do you have installed on your smartphone? Most free apps tend to gather information from your phone (contacts, location and searches). Even if these apps are free, they will monetize your information by providing targeted ads for advertisers.
There are lots of web services who want to collect every user’s data, but there are also ways to fight them. Here’s an awesome infographic by WhoIsHostingThis about keeping internet usage private.