I am sure if you have searched something on the web apparently when you visit your Facebook or Instagram, you will see that Ads are popping regarding the same search that you did on the web. Believe it or not you can do a Google search for best-hosting providers for WordPress on the web, then open your Facebook you will see ads are popping specifically for hosting. You can try it, so now the question is how to prevent social media and emails from tracking you.
Apparently, you have also seen that Facebook has changed its company to meta, and the reason is really simple because the lawmakers of the United States are forcing on Facebook a lot of pressure these days. Just as Google created alphabets, Facebook has changed its name to meta to clear its name and move towards the metaverse.
You have you may also have heard that Apple’s iOS privacy settings have caused social media around 10 billion loss. This includes Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, and Snapchat (Reported by the verge).
So, now you know that social media companies are tracking every step that you take on the web and then use it to increase their own income basically they are using the user’s data. So the question is what are your steps to prevent social media and emails from tracking you.
What is tracking pixel and How it works?
In common words of people, the pixel is an HTML code, and its one and only purpose are to track users’ behavior whenever they open an email or search on the web, purchase a product, and more. To read more about How the Pixel works, read this article but I am still guiding you with an example.
There is this extension called, Pixel Helper by Facebook, which you can install in Google Chrome or Microsoft Edge, or any other browser. And by way, when someone is running Facebook ads on products (especially on dropshipping) they are creating a pixel ID and then they are tracking you.
Suppose, this website (ozzys.com.au) is built on Shopify.com, I added a product to the cart and went up to the way to checkout. You can see the steps in the Google Pixel Helper.
If you purchase the product, a new purchase category will also be added there.
This is just the smallest method that Facebook ads users are using to track. other major methods which common people don’t know are mentioned by Cambridge Analytica in the documentary on Netflix known as “The Great hack.” I recommend you to watch it.
Prevent Emails From tracking You
1. How to Prevent Gmail From Tracking You?
Since by default the pixel tracker is configured in a way to track the user’s behavior even inside the email, there is an option within the Gmail settings that you can enable it to stop tracking. It can be configured both on the web version and on the App.
First, open your Gmail account> click on the settings> then choose see all the settings.
Under the images> click on the Ask before displaying external images and save it.
Inside Android device click on the Setting> Choose an email account> Data usage> and then enable the Ask before displaying external images.
Click on the images to zoom
In iOS open the Gmail App> Settings> Account> Images> Ask before displaying external images.
2. How to Stop Email tracking on Outlook?
- Outlook on Windows: Go to the options of the outlook> click on the trust center. Then enable the Don’t download pictures automatically in standard HTML email messages or RSS items (Check the box) and Don’t download pictures automatically in encrypted or signed HTML email messages.
click on the images to zoom.
2. Outlook in mac: File> Preferences> Reading> Security> Automatically download pictures from the internet> Never.
3. Outlook in Web: Settings> View all Outlook settings> Privacy and Data> External Images> Always use the Outlook services to load images.
- There are also browser extensions that you can use to block T email tracking if you are using your email on the web. PixelBlock for Gmail is common for this job.
- Thunderbird blocks tracker by deafult.
How to Prevent Social Media From Tracking You?
Most of the time we are spending our time on social media (Facebook, Snapchat, Instagram, YouTube etc). These websites have basically cookies and other data tracking system that a common user cannot understand. You can use adblocker extension and get rid of them
For now I can only recommend you to change your browser. Use Brave instead of Chrome, Mozilla, Edge, Safari etc. Because Brave is specifically built for the privacy control and by default the shields of the brave browser is turned on every website you visit. Even if you browse through the web, Brave Browser can block all kinds of trackers.
If you open your Facebook, you will also see that the trackers are blocked.
Here is small comparison of the Brave Browser vs other browsers.
And Finally Stop being followed online.
Note: If I find a better solution then the Brave Broswer I will mention it in this post.