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  1. #1
    Registered User
    Join Date
    07-27-2008
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    1

    Skyfire browser: Thowing privacy down the drain?

    For those interested in the Skyfire browser, I'd suggest you read the privacy policy before downloading. Watch out concerning what you are agreeing to.

    I'd call this browser "Skyphorm."


    The business model of Skyfire looks like as though the product is being created by a doubleclick kind of company as a honeypot to track you, rather than by a quality computer company looking to create a browser.

    It reminds me of Phorm, the company that ISPs use to track all your browsing, except that your signup here is being done voluntarily on your part.

    If you haven't heard about Phorm, I'd suggest the podcast "Security Now" with Leo Laporte and security expert Steve Gibson. The podcast "Bad Phorm" is a must for anyone who cares about keeping private from the snooping eyes of advertisers.

    To be fair, the clear difference between Phorm and Skyphorm, however, is that Phorm is done without your consent or sometimes even, knowledge. With Skyphorm, you choose to give up most of your privacy in browsing.


    To highlight some key things you are agreeing to by downloading Skyfire:


    Browser Usage Information
    "Browser Usage Information permits us to recommend products and services that we believe will be of interest to you, personalize your viewing and Browser usage, select targeted advertisements or other promotions for you and offer you local content and advertising information."

    ...also

    Anonymous Usage Information

    "From time to time, Skyfire may offer you the opportunity to use the Browser in “Anonymous Mode”. By choosing this feature, Skyfire will collect Browser Usage Information, but such collection will be on an anonymous basis only, meaning that it will not be tied to an ID Number or your Personal Information for the period of time that the Anonymous Mode option is made available to you and has been selected by you (“Anonymous Usage Information”). By downloading our Browser and accepting our Terms of Use, you have given us your express consent to collect Anonymous Usage Information and use it as described below. You cannot block the collection of Anonymous Usage Information and still use the Browser.

    Skyfire uses Anonymous Usage Information to understand what our customers want, for editorial, feedback, marketing and promotion purposes, for statistical analysis, product development and content improvement and to create aggregate reports of how users are using the Browser. Certain Anonymous Usage Information would be considered a part of your Personal Information if it were combined with other identifiers (for example, combining your zip code with your street address) in a way that enables you to be identified. But the same pieces of information are considered Anonymous Usage Information when they are taken alone or combined only with other non-identifying information (for example, your viewing activities). We may combine your Personal Information with Anonymous Usage Information and aggregate it with information collected from other Browser users to provide you with a better experience, to improve the quality and value of the Browser and to analyze and understand how our Site and Browser are used. We may also use the combined information without aggregating it to serve you specifically, for instance to deliver a product to you according to your preferences or restrictions."

    --------------------------------------------

    The company says it will collect anonymous information, then it defines anonymous as something in which the company "may combine" with your personal information. In other words, you are agreeing that Skyfire can do just about anything with any of your information that they choose to do!

    Finally, for those who maintain that you don't care if advertising companies snoop on your every browsing move on your phone, that's fine. However, it is important that you know what you are getting into.
    Last edited by Phonetic; 07-27-2008 at 02:00 PM.

  2. #2
    Atheist Kushed's Avatar
    Join Date
    01-05-2006
    Posts
    68
    Good catch. This might not matter to most people but it does to me. The fact that the browser has to proxy trough their servers was enough for me to stop using it.

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