Privacy Badger Free Ad Blocker New Google Adsense Threat

The Electronic Frontier Foundation (also known as EFF) recently (last updated on July 18, 2014) released a new browser plugin called “Privacy Badger”. It is a free web browser plugin or add-on which can stop each website you visit from spying your Internet activities. Most Internet users thinks that we’re being spied whenever we hook into the Internet and visit a website. Unfortunately, in most cases it is true! Most websites contains small codes which behaves as a monitor. It tracks our activities like what page(s) we visit, what are the activities we did, what we click, or where do we go after we’re done. These are just samples of how a website can monitor how users behave when surfing the Internet and how a website can track them.

Privacy Badger Free Ad Blocker

Another code that most website owners and bloggers have (like me) are web ads which either they obtained from an advertising agency or from some big and known online advertising companies like Google with their Google Adsense product. And this poses a huge dilemma to bloggers like us from earning good money from showing web ads because the Privacy Badger is one of the codes being detected by the plugin and gives the user an option to disable it! They have given the Internet user a free ad blocker that behaves like Disconnect, Adblock Plus, Ghostery and many more. Last year, we learned that Google paid Eyeo (the company who created the free ad blocker Adblock Plus) just to whitelist Google Adsense’ web ads. This is to prevent the free ad blocker plugin from removing their ads on all websites who uses their product. Now, with Privacy Badger, I am sure that an advertising agency will definitely face the same problem before because their web ads will possibly blocked – again.

 How can Privacy Badger (Free Ad Blocker) Can Work Against Google Adsense?

I have tried the plugin myself this morning to see how it’s going to affect my blog site’s web ads. After I installed the Privacy Badger on my Google Chrome, the web ads were still showing – which is good!

Privacy Badger Can hurt Google Adsense Users
As you can see the Google Ads are still there.

However, you will notice that Google Adsense ( tracking code is being detected by the plugin. Also, the user is given the option whether to block the cookies or worst the whole domain. This means that if the user opts to block the domain then the web ads which were previously displaying on your blog site will suddenly disappear as the page reloads!


Privacy Badger Configuration
The user is given 3 options to control how Google Adsense should behave.

Look at the screenshot below when I have selected the option to block the domain.

Privacy Badger Blocks Google Adsense
BOOM! Our web ads have disappear.

This is not the first time we’ve seen web browser plugins like this before. The intention of companies like EFF is good and many Internet users will benefit from it. Most especially those people who are not in favor of being spied – well, who wants to be tracked and spied? I am sure no one does want that to happen.  Such plugins like this are good, however, it has an adverse effect for bloggers like us who decently earn money from advertising agencies like Google Adsense. I guess for now we (bloggers) should not react hastily. Instead, we should monitor our earnings and it is a “must” that we indicate on our Privacy Policy page what kind of information our website is getting from the readers – so better update it now! So that they’ll be well informed.

If you want to know more about this new free ad blocker Privacy Badger from EFF, you can visit their official plugin page and FAQ. The plugin is available for Chrome and Firefox users.

But there’s some good news!

I have just checked that Privacy Badger, free ad blocker,  plugin “only” works on desktop users and it is not applicable on mobile users such iPhone. So if your website traffic is high on mobile devices then it’s more likely that this plugin will have a low effect on you. 🙂

[note]The plugin automatically disables your social sharing buttons like codes from ShareThis.[/note]

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