Blacklight: A Real-Time Website Privacy Inspector


A Real-Time Website Privacy Inspector

Blacklight, developed by The Markup, is a real-time website privacy checker that exposes user-tracking tools and monitors data access during web browsing. It identifies various surveillance methods, including third-party cookies, ad trackers, key logging, session recording, canvas fingerprinting, Facebook, and Google Analytics tracking.

An audit conducted by The Markup, an investigative journalism nonprofit, revealed that 87% of the most visited websites engage in digital tracking without user consent. Blacklight’s analysis confirmed widespread tracking, including session recorders, key loggers, and canvas fingerprinting. Google and Facebook trackers were prevalent, found on 74% and 33% of websites, respectively. Notably, while some companies like Apple prioritize privacy by avoiding tracking technologies, others, such as pet food-maker Purina, extensively track user behavior.

In addition to identifying tracking on websites, users can leverage Blacklight to assess if critical applications are tracking them and compare it to their data privacy policies. To further safeguard privacy, techniques such as browsing in incognito mode and using Virtual Private Networks (VPNs) can be employed. For information about different VPN services, you can visit here


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