It will soon be a year since we published our article exposing how Chrome extensions track their users. The research received worldwide attention and was picked up by leading tech sites like Observer, Metro and BBC. A lot has happened since then. Google has updated their User Data Policy for the Chrome Web Store to “ensure transparent use of the data in a way that is consistent with the wishes and expectations of users.” But the story didn’t end there…
The issue has recently been brought to light again after the WOT (Web of Trust) extension disappeared from Google Chrome store, which might mean it has been banned for violating Google’s updated User Data Policy – however, this has not been confirmed. WOT, an add-on promising users a safer browsing experience, turned out to have been gathering and selling a considerable amount of user data, including browsing history, usernames and emails.
WOT left a response on their forum, which can be read here.
Google’s new User Data Policy is a step in the right direction, but there are still incidents that clearly show that user privacy remains a key issue in web security.