The Internet: How can users benefit from simply browsing?

  • Catherine Kate
  • Business Editor, BBC

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We are vulnerable to tracking during most of our online activities

The details of what each of us is looking for or seeing while browsing the internet are very important to some companies as it is a valuable source of revenue estimated at billions of dollars.

This data helps tracked companies like Google and Facebook to earn many billions of dollars a year in advertising revenue as they use the information they collect to target us with advertising.

For example, if you browse through the websites of online fashion stores and you are thinking of buying a new pair of jeans, it is assumed that within a short period of time you will see advertisements for jeans appear on your computer screen while browsing through another website, which is something that happens to all of us when we think of buying something online.

That we are so vulnerable to being tracked down while using the internet in this way is a little worrying. A recent study showed that data on the average European person’s internet usage is shared 376 times a day, and that number nearly doubles for American surfers, reaching 747 times.

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