We've been warned to delete our browsing history from our browser cache on a regular basis. Now web surfers are being advised to use the latest versions of the browsers Firefox, Chrome or Safari's, because these browsers block history sniffing attacks say the researchers who uncovered how some websites can grab private data without permission of the site visitor. Internet Explorer is not recommended, nor are other browsers, because they do not block history sniffing.
. Computer Science Professor at the University of California, San Diego, Hovav Shacham said in a press release
"Nobody knew if anyone on the Internet was using history sniffing to get at users' private browsing history. What we were able to show is that the answer is yes."
The information is used by some website owners and advertisers to build user profiles, collect information for phishing or to learn what sites a surfer has visited. University of California's Sorin Lerner, who collaborated on the research, said
However, when it comes to evaluating the threat level history sniffing presents to surfers, the researchers said consumers should be more concerned about malware. Said Sacham,
"I think people who have updated or switched browsers should now worry about things other than history sniffing, like keeping their Flash plug-in up to date so they don't get exploited. But that doesn't mean that the companies that have engaged in history sniffing for the currently 60 percent of the user population that is vulnerable to it should get a free pass."