HomeWinBuzzer NewsMeta Exploits Browser Data for Enhanced Ad Targeting on Facebook and Instagram

Meta Exploits Browser Data for Enhanced Ad Targeting on Facebook and Instagram

Facebook's new Link History tracks every website you click within Facebook, raising privacy concerns despite claims of improved ads and content discovery.

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Meta Platforms has a new feature that records the browsing history of users within its in-app browsers on and . Information from this link history, including the web pages visited over the past thirty days, purportedly aims to enhance the user experience. However, Meta has acknowledged that this data may also be used to improve the relevancy of ads across their technologies. Users concerned about their privacy have been pointed towards opt-out guidelines available on the platforms' help pages.

Facebook has recently introduced a new feature that lets you see and revisit the links you have clicked on while browsing Facebook. The feature, called Link History, is turned on by default and can be accessed from the Settings menu on the Facebook app.

Link History shows you a list of websites you have visited with your Facebook browsing activity, along with the date and time of each visit. You can also tap on any link to open it again in Facebook's in-app browser.

According to Facebook, Link History is designed to help you “find things you're interested in and discover new content”. It also claims that Link History can be used to improve the ads you see across Meta technologies, which include Facebook, Instagram, , and Oculus.

Privacy Concerns

However, Link History also raises some privacy and , as it is another way for Facebook to track and collect data about your online behavior. Link History stores details about the websites you visit, such as the domain name, the URL, and the title of the page. It also gives you the option to control how long Facebook keeps this data, ranging from 3 months to indefinitely.

Link History is currently available only for mobile users who use Facebook's in-app browser to open links. This browser has been found to inject JavaScript code into third-party websites, which can cause potential risks to the user. For example, the code can interfere with the website's functionality, expose the user's identity, or even execute malicious commands.

To protect your privacy and security, you may want to disable Link History or use a different browser to open links from Facebook. You can also clear your Link History data at any time from the Settings menu. However, this does not guarantee that Facebook will stop tracking your browsing activity, as it may still use other methods to do so.

Luke Jones
Luke Jones
Luke has been writing about all things tech for more than five years. He is following Microsoft closely to bring you the latest news about Windows, Office, Azure, Skype, HoloLens and all the rest of their products.

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