Trackography: You never read alone

Presented at 31C3 (2014), Dec. 29, 2014, 10 p.m. (30 minutes)

Have you ever wondered who is watching while you are reading your favourite media online?

Whether we are reading the Guardian, the New York Times, the Hindu or any other news website, third party trackers are collecting data about our online behaviour.

This lecture will present Tactical Tech's new project, Trackography, which shows that we are all part of a global tracking business.

When we access websites, third parties are able to track our online behaviour, aggregate our data, link it to other data collected about us and subsequently create profiles. These profiles tell a story about us โ€“ which may or may not be true - and can include our political beliefs, gender, sexual orientation, economic status, habits, interests, affiliations and much more.

And while this might all appear to be harmless, we largely have very little control over how and when our data is collected, how our profiles are created, whether they are accurate, who they are subsequently shared with, who has access to them, what they are used for, where they are stored and for how long.

The global data industry has been very opaque... until now.

Trackography illustrates which companies track our data when we read the news online, which countries our data travels to and how our data is handled everytime we access a media website within a period of time.

We developed Trackography to increase transparency about the data collection industry. We hope it will start a discussion on unseen and unconsented data collection and on the politics of data.

Come to our lecture, learn about Trackography and help us track the trackers!


  • Claudio เฟ“ vecna
    I've started hacking low level of TCP/IP, I've figure out how much the users are exposed, since the 2002 I'm dedicated on privacy advocacy and research. Core member of Globaleaks, software engineer, I've dedicate most of 2014 in doing Trackography, a global observatory of the tracking business and users exposure. I'm exactly the synthetic person described above.
  • Maria Xynou
    Maria works as a privacy and surveillance researcher at the Tactical Technology Collective in Berlin. She has previously worked in India as a policy researcher on surveillance at the Centre for Internet and Society (CIS), where she investigated India's surveillance schemes and technologies. Maria has also interned with Privacy International and with the Parliament of Greece, and holds a MSc in Security Studies from the University College London (UCL).


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