Is big brother not watching?
Google knows who you are, what you searched for, when you did it, where you were located when you did it and what computer you used. (http://www.google.com/
Google tracks your IP address, time/date, query attempts, web browser type & version, MAC address and more.
1. Your internet service provider uses a unique subnet mask with a unique IP range that makes your region, city or even neighborhood identifiable. IPv4 addresses have 4 octets. The class of the IP range purchased by your internet service provider in your area, along with the subnet mask used by your service provider can separate clients by physical and logical segments.
2. Google logs a time and date stamp with each query attempt. Attaching the timestamp to your IP can also be used for your security; If you generally browse the web from your home computer, but then I hack your account from my home computer at the same time, the conflicting timestamps and IP addresses are indicative of your account being accessed at an unusual location. Banks use this simple technology as well.
3. Google logs what you are searching for by logging your query entries. This info can be spatial organized along with day of the week and time of the day data to formulate personal, unique usage habits/patterns. Counter terrorism agencies use this type of collection of data to track trending events or trends of activity using algorithms that combine and analyze nationwide data.
4. Whether you surf the web using Firefox, Chrome, IE, Safari, or whether your operating system is Mac, Linux, Win Vista or Win 8, might not initially seem important to you. Google wants to sell their Chrome brand browser so they will advertise it to you until you download and use it. They will know if you have done so or not. But that’s not so imposing or obtrusive. The version of the browser and operating system could be indicative of the age of the device being used. When the region of the IP address is evaluated in conjunction with very old versions of web browsers or OS for example, it could be used to identify a situation where antiquated technology is being used for cyber criminal activity from remote locations (or where competitive corporate hacking takes place to gain a competitive market advantage.
Do you see how these five types of data-collection are used to build a demographical, geographical, socio-economical web of who you are, where you go, who you know, and what your interests are?
IT professional & Law Student