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Enhanced Tracking Protection appears not to be working

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I'm running Firefox 71.0 (64-bit) on Windows 10 Professional (1803), and have enabled Strict Enhanced Tracking Protection.

Yet, no matter what website I visit, the shield icon remains grey, i.e., it never turns purple. The details that I see when clicking the icon confirm that Enhanced Tracking Protection is On for this site, but that No trackers known to Firefox were detected on this page.

But, duckduckgo Privacy Essentials readily identifies trackers that it has blocked, e.g., googletagmanager.com.

So, I thought that perhaps DDG Privacy Essentials was interfering with Firefox Enhanced Tracking Protection, so I removed that extension.

Still Enhanced Tracking Protections says that it cannot identify any known trackers, regardless of what site I visit. That can't be accurate. Even at Yahoo.com, it says that no trackers are known to Firefox.

What could be going wrong here?

Thanks!

I'm running Firefox 71.0 (64-bit) on Windows 10 Professional (1803), and have enabled Strict Enhanced Tracking Protection. Yet, no matter what website I visit, the shield icon remains grey, i.e., it never turns purple. The details that I see when clicking the icon confirm that Enhanced Tracking Protection is On for this site, but that No trackers known to Firefox were detected on this page. But, duckduckgo Privacy Essentials readily identifies trackers that it has blocked, e.g., googletagmanager.com. So, I thought that perhaps DDG Privacy Essentials was interfering with Firefox Enhanced Tracking Protection, so I removed that extension. Still Enhanced Tracking Protections says that it cannot identify any known trackers, regardless of what site I visit. That can't be accurate. Even at Yahoo.com, it says that no trackers are known to Firefox. What could be going wrong here? Thanks!

Chosen solution

Firefox ETP was designed to work without other extensions in mind. In my experience, extensions seem to block ahead of ETP. And there are different block lists being used.

An example: ETP uses a block list from Disconnect. If you want to add the Disconnect extension to Firefox you need to disable all ETP, add the extension, then re-enable ETP. The Disconnect extension needs to work ahead of ETP.

As far as testing with add-ons disabled, I would skip that, and disable the extensions in Options.

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  • User Agent: Mozilla/5.0 (Windows NT 10.0; Win64; x64; rv:71.0) Gecko/20100101 Firefox/71.0

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RobertJ
  • Top 10 Contributor
125 solutions 1300 answers

Hi valgus79189, Are you using any other blocking extensions or ad blockers? A visit to Yahoo with no extensions and ETP set to Strict offers these results: Tracking Content: sb.scorecardresearch. com

Fingerprinters: rtb.openx. net pixel.mathtag. com

Then, when I enable Malwarebytes Browser Guard, there is nothing in ETP being blocked.

You can start Firefox with add-ons disabled to see: Menu -> Help -> Restart with Add-ons Disabled

Hi valgus79189, Are you using any other blocking extensions or ad blockers? A visit to Yahoo with no extensions and ETP set to Strict offers these results: Tracking Content: sb.scorecardresearch. com Fingerprinters: rtb.openx. net pixel.mathtag. com Then, when I enable Malwarebytes Browser Guard, there is nothing in ETP being blocked. You can start Firefox with add-ons disabled to see: Menu -> Help -> Restart with Add-ons Disabled
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RobertJ
  • Top 10 Contributor
125 solutions 1300 answers

Disregard that Safe Mode test. I'm seeing different results. I'll get back to you.

Disregard that Safe Mode test. I'm seeing different results. I'll get back to you.
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RobertJ
  • Top 10 Contributor
125 solutions 1300 answers

Interesting. Apparently, Safe Mode also temporarily disables ETP. That's new to me!

Anyway, other blocking extensions or ad blockers will block before it gets to ETP. And, on Yahoo, if you wait for the delayed trackers, you'll get:

Tracking Content: sb.scorecardresearch. com video.adaptv.advertising. com

Fingerprinters: us-u.openx. net rtb.openx. net pixel.mathtag. com

Interesting. Apparently, Safe Mode also temporarily disables ETP. That's new to me! Anyway, other blocking extensions or ad blockers will block before it gets to ETP. And, on Yahoo, if you wait for the delayed trackers, you'll get: Tracking Content: sb.scorecardresearch. com video.adaptv.advertising. com Fingerprinters: us-u.openx. net rtb.openx. net pixel.mathtag. com
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Question owner

Thanks to My_Chees_is_Slippin' for the suggestions and research.

But, I'm still confused. Here's what I've done.

I restarted Firefox with Add-ons Disabled and with ETP set to Strict, I see the same as before, "no trackers known to Firefox were detected on this page" @ yahoo.com.

Same if I switch ETP to Standard.

However, if I switch ETP to Custom, check all the options, select "All third-party cookies..." and "In all Windows", @ yahoo.com I see tons of third-party cookies blocked, but nothing else, including Tracking Content and Fingerprinters, although sb.scorecardresearch. com is listed as blocked under Third Party cookies. So, even in Safe Mode, ETP seemed to work at least partially when set to Custom.

Part of my original problem was almost certainly that NoScript was blocking some things that ETP would have detected. But after restarting with Add-ons Disabled, that should not have been an issue.

I will try yahoo.com later and let the window stay open for an extended period to see if the Fingerprinters appear as blocked.

Still confused about whether ETP is still actually protecting my browsing as advertised.

Thanks.

Thanks to My_Chees_is_Slippin' for the suggestions and research. But, I'm still confused. Here's what I've done. I restarted Firefox with Add-ons Disabled and with ETP set to Strict, I see the same as before, "no trackers known to Firefox were detected on this page" @ yahoo.com. Same if I switch ETP to Standard. However, if I switch ETP to Custom, check all the options, select "All third-party cookies..." and "In all Windows", @ yahoo.com I see tons of third-party cookies blocked, but nothing else, including Tracking Content and Fingerprinters, although sb.scorecardresearch. com is listed as blocked under Third Party cookies. So, even in Safe Mode, ETP seemed to work at least partially when set to Custom. Part of my original problem was almost certainly that NoScript was blocking some things that ETP would have detected. But after restarting with Add-ons Disabled, that should not have been an issue. I will try yahoo.com later and let the window stay open for an extended period to see if the Fingerprinters appear as blocked. Still confused about whether ETP is still actually protecting my browsing as advertised. Thanks.
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RobertJ
  • Top 10 Contributor
125 solutions 1300 answers

Chosen Solution

Firefox ETP was designed to work without other extensions in mind. In my experience, extensions seem to block ahead of ETP. And there are different block lists being used.

An example: ETP uses a block list from Disconnect. If you want to add the Disconnect extension to Firefox you need to disable all ETP, add the extension, then re-enable ETP. The Disconnect extension needs to work ahead of ETP.

As far as testing with add-ons disabled, I would skip that, and disable the extensions in Options.

Firefox ETP was designed to work without other extensions in mind. In my experience, extensions seem to block ahead of ETP. And there are different block lists being used. An example: ETP uses a block list from Disconnect. If you want to add the Disconnect extension to Firefox you need to disable all ETP, add the extension, then re-enable ETP. The Disconnect extension ''needs'' to work ahead of ETP. As far as testing with add-ons disabled, I would skip that, and disable the extensions in Options.
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Question owner

Yes, the answer is "precedence among ETP and add-ons". For example, enabling duckduckGo Privacy Essentials catches almost all trackers before ETP acts, so it appears that ETP is "inert".

But, what's puzzling, is that this effect apparently extends beyond Trackers to Fingerprinters, which I don't believe that duckduckGo Privacy Essentials even attempts to block. E.g., if I don't enable DDG PE, then ETP finds FingerPrinters. If I enable DDG PE, then ETP doesn't find FingerPrinters.

So it goes. On to more important things.

I'll probably just settle on ETP alone for this kind of security.

Yes, the answer is "precedence among ETP and add-ons". For example, enabling duckduckGo Privacy Essentials catches almost all trackers before ETP acts, so it appears that ETP is "inert". But, what's puzzling, is that this effect apparently extends beyond Trackers to Fingerprinters, which I don't believe that duckduckGo Privacy Essentials even attempts to block. E.g., if I don't enable DDG PE, then ETP finds FingerPrinters. If I enable DDG PE, then ETP doesn't find FingerPrinters. So it goes. On to more important things. I'll probably just settle on ETP alone for this kind of security.
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RobertJ
  • Top 10 Contributor
125 solutions 1300 answers

The interaction between extensions and ETP does produce interesting results. I'm still toying with ETP and Safe Mode! I'll catch up with you, though!

Have you thought about letting DDG handle the Trackers and let ETP handle Fingerprinters? What I mean is, turn off Trackers in ETP in Custom settings.

The interaction between extensions and ETP does produce interesting results. I'm still toying with ETP and Safe Mode! I'll catch up with you, though! Have you thought about letting DDG handle the Trackers and let ETP handle Fingerprinters? What I mean is, turn off Trackers in ETP in Custom settings.
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Question owner

I might trying splitting the workload between DDG EP and Firefox ETP out of curiosity. But, even if it works OK what advantage would that offer?

Is DDG EP is more effective at blocking Trackers than ETP? I haven't seen anything that would suggest that either has an edge over the other in that regard.

Thanks.

I might trying splitting the workload between DDG EP and Firefox ETP out of curiosity. But, even if it works OK what advantage would that offer? Is DDG EP is more effective at blocking Trackers than ETP? I haven't seen anything that would suggest that either has an edge over the other in that regard. Thanks.
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RobertJ
  • Top 10 Contributor
125 solutions 1300 answers

My thought was that "layering" would have an advantage over "redundancy"

My thought was that "layering" would have an advantage over "redundancy"
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RobertJ
  • Top 10 Contributor
125 solutions 1300 answers

And, it's been months since I've used DDG Privacy Essentials. I really can't comment one way or the other.

And, it's been months since I've used DDG Privacy Essentials. I really can't comment one way or the other.
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