Mozilla has declared to Lawrence Abrams from Bleeping Computer that soon Hyperlink Ping Tracking will be a default feature in their Firefox browser.
For those who are not familiar with hyperlink auditing, it is a way to keep track of clicks and paths.
Auditing links became a priority for Big Tech. They often do it by all means possible: not only users are totally unaware of this process of data acquisition; the functionality is integrated by default in all the most popular search engines, and users are not offered the possibility to deactivate it.
Firefox had been so far one of the few browsers not to have hyperlink ping tracking on by default, one of the reasons being that it can make websites vulnerable to DDos (Distributed Denial Of Service) attacks.
Apparently, though, they were just running late.
According to Mozilla and Apple, the tracking functionalities aim at improving user experience rather than breaching his privacy, and switching off the Ping or API beacons would result in poorer tracing techniques adopted by websites, with a negative impact on loading speeds and performance.
Apple pointed out that will not make the ping tracking optional, as it wouldn’t have a positive impact on user’s privacy. Turning off Ping would not “solve the privacy implications of link click analytics, disabling it would result in companies using techniques that would ‘hurt the user experience’”
For those who do not wish to have their link clicks tracked, ping blockers are included in UBlock Origin.
Or we could opt for more privacy oriented browsers such as Brave: Brendan Eich’s open-source project doesn’t support ping tracking at all and still seems to hold dear its users’ protection.