Mozilla enabled ads in Firefox and they're active in Fedora

Nico Kadel-Garcia nkadel at
Sun Nov 23 04:50:40 UTC 2014

On Tue, Nov 18, 2014 at 4:17 AM, Nikos Roussos
<comzeradd at> wrote:
> On 11/18/2014 08:24 AM, Nico Kadel-Garcia wrote:
>> On Sun, Nov 16, 2014 at 3:54 PM, Nikos Roussos
>> <comzeradd at> wrote:
>>> On 11/16/2014 08:24 PM, Christopher wrote:
>>>> On Sun, Nov 16, 2014 at 6:46 AM, Mustafa Muhammad
>>>> <mustafaa.alhamdaani at <mailto:mustafaa.alhamdaani at>>
>>>> wrote:
>>>> This doesn't seem relevant to this discussion, unless Fedora browsers
>>>> are automatically, and without the user's explicit knowledge or
>>>> permission, navigating to Google's search engine, which (AFAICT) they
>>>> are not.
>>> Same happens with these tiles. No data is sent back to Mozilla unless
>>> you *choose* to click one of the promoted tiles.
>> Even if not sent to Mozilla, it's accessible to the advertisers. I
>> could spend a long time explaining the various means, that web
>> advertisers track their users, ranging from crafting URL's and
>> metadata about the particular requests to 'web bugs', those little one
>> pixel transparent gifs so ubiquitous on the plethora of
>> websites with fake names used to collect the data.
> The tiles are coming from Mozilla. So yes please explain how the
> advertisers can track me through them if I don't click them.

Much depends on what's in the tile. For example an embedded 1 pixel
transparent gif, commonly known as a "web bug", and loaded from a
third party web repository such as one of the many misleading aliases
for, is one of the favorites. Another is crafting
the URL used by the displayed advertising page to contain metadata
about the browsing client. Unless the tiles are vetted by, hosted by,
and have their content reviewed and manually sanitized by someone both
paranoid and content over at Mozilla, it's safe to assume there is
tracking information embedded in the tiles. The tracking information
has become ubiquitous in far too much web content, especially in paid
advertising content.

I'm afraid it's not reasonable to assume that just because Mozilla is
providing the hooks to publish web ads that those web ads do not,
themselves, collect and use personal user data, especially the client
IP and browsing history.

                           Nico Kadel-Garcia

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