The Federal Trade Commission recently issued its final privacy report with recommendations for best privacy practices for companies to follow, and in it, the agency lauded the Web's Do Not Track technology. It's a feature that's been getting a lot of attention lately, especially from browser makers, and now AVG is jumping on the Do Not Track bandwagon by integrating the technology into its free and paid security suites.
Introduced through a security update, AVG 2012 now includes a Do Not Trace feature that informs users about the data being collected by various websites and gives them the option of not being tracked.
"We continue to listen to our approximately 108 million-strong community and we are constantly focused and driving our research and development to the creation of innovative technologies," said AVG Technologies CEO JR Smith. "Today we deliver another important milestone with an active Do Not Track feature available in the latest version of AVG 2012 and through our latest product update for existing customers. This feature is available for free because we believe all consumers have the right to take back control of their online privacy."
Unfortunately it's not available as a free, standalone download, though it is included in AVG's freemium security suite. If you have it installed, you'll notice an eye-shaped icon in your Chrome, Firefox, or Internet Explorer browser window that shows how many websites and advertisers are collecting data about your activity. This information is categorized into Ad Networks, Social Buttons, and Web Analytics with additional information that includes:
Data collection is anonymous
Data collected contains personal identifiable information
How the collected data is retained
If the collected data is shared
Armed with the above information, you can then choose whether to let it be or have AVG step in and cover your tracks. You can find out more details in AVG's blog post here.