Ad blockers are great if all you’re looking to do is reduce website loading times and to cut out annoying ads from websites. However if you’re using ad blockers hoping that it will protect your privacy and from being tracked by advertisers, it might not actually be as effective as you think or hope.

According to a group of French researchers (via The Next Web), they have found that using extensions like ad blockers could actually make it easier for advertisers to track you and your activities on the web. It’s not just ad blocking extensions that do this, but basically any kind of extension that uses identifying information could help make you easier to track.

This is because it creates a unique fingerprint for users which means that you might be easier to identify you than you think. TNW tested out the researcher’s tool and found that within seconds, it was able to tell what kind of plugins were being used, the networks that you’re logged into, and more.

According to the researchers, they have suggested that users should use Mozilla’s Firefox which is apparently less leaky compared to other browsers. Other suggestions also include logging out of social networks when not in use and also browsing in incognito mode helps too. However if your use of ad blockers is purely to block ads, then we guess maybe this is something you can live with.

Filed in General. Read more about Privacy.

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