In exchange for giving these sites the power to track every pageview, purchase, search query, and much, much more, Facebook (naturally) requires that this data be shared with it, too. In cases where the website visitor has an account on some Facebook platform, this offsite data just gets glombed onto whatever Facebook already knows about that person. If they don’t have a Facebook account, then the company collects that data anyway, and uses it to create a “shadow profile” of that particular person. These are the sorts of shadowy practices that Mozilla’s team wants to research with this study — and you can help them do it if you’re a Firefox user. Mozilla teamed up with reporters from the Markup to gather details about Facebook tracking using a free-to-download browser extension, Mozilla Rally, that will hoover up data sent out by Facebook’s pixels as you browse across the web. Aside from that data, the extension also keeps track of the time spent on different web pages, the URLs that the browser visits, and more. Mozilla was quick to note in its announcement that the only data being exported from the extension will be de-identified, and not shared with any third parties besides the Markup’s reporters.
Read more of this story at Slashdot.