40 tracking cookies from 2 news sites: this is why you need VPN

You have probably (hopefully) been told that open wifi is insecure, and that you should use a virtual private network to encrypt and protect your traffic. Most people don’t do this, perhaps because it seems hard to do?

Opera software now offers free VPN. It is built into the browser on the desktop, and a standalone app on smartphones. It also comes with the ability to block tracking cookies! Those are cookies that track the pages you look at on the web – for commercial purposes (or so they claim). An old but nice nontechnical write-up on tracking cookies is found at geek.com. The difference from back then is that big data and AI have amplified trackers abilities to spy on you and analyze your online life. 

How many trackers are you exposed to by visiting high traffic news sites? Here’s what Opera VPN reported after visiting CNN.com and Bloomberg.com without clicking a single link on those pages. 

40 trackers? I have no interest in feeding ad networks with my online habits. I suggest you go ahead and activate VPN and cookie filters on you mobile in addition to your desktop, also when browsing on secure networks! 

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