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How do I turn on the Do Not Track feature?

Firefox lets you tell websites that you do not want them to track your browsing behavior. This article explains what tracking is and how to turn on the Do Not Track feature.

Tracking

Most major websites track their visitors' behavior and then sell or provide that information to other companies. This information can be used to show ads, products or services specifically targeted to you. Firefox has a Do Not Track feature that lets you tell every website you visit, their advertisers, and content providers that you don't want your browsing behavior tracked.

Honoring this setting is voluntary — individual websites are not required to respect it. Websites that do honor this setting should automatically stop tracking your behavior without any further action from you. Turning on this feature will not affect your ability to log in to websites nor cause Firefox to forget your private information, such as the contents of shopping carts, location information or login information.

Note: You may see less relevant advertising on websites if you have the Do Not Track option activated.

The Do Not Track feature is turned off by default. To turn it on:

  1. Click the menu button New Fx Menu and choose Options.Preferences.
  2. Select the Privacy panel.
  3. Check Request that sites not track you.
    do not track fx42
  4. Close the about:preferences page. Any changes you've made will automatically be saved.

The Do Not Track feature is turned off by default. To turn it on:

  1. Click the menu button New Fx Menu and choose Options.Preferences.
  2. Select the Privacy panel.
  3. Click manage your Do Not Track settings.
  4. Check Use Do Not Track.
    do not track fx46
  5. Click OK.
  6. Close the about:preferences page. Any changes you've made will automatically be saved.

The Do Not Track feature is turned off by default except in Private Browsing where it is always on. To turn it on:

  1. Click the menu button New Fx Menu and choose Options.Preferences.
  2. Select the Privacy panel.
  3. Click manage your Do Not Track settings.
  4. Check Always apply Do Not Track.
    Fx49Privacy-DoNotTrack
  5. Click OK.
  6. Close the about:preferences page. Any changes you've made will automatically be saved.

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Comments

The purpose of this forum is to discuss the How do I turn on the Do Not Track feature? Knowledge Base article. If you are interested in editing this article or have suggestions for improving it, you can post a new thread or reply to an existing thread.

Past discussion about this article can be found here:
/forums/knowledge-base-articles/704965

Note: This article was renamed from "How do I stop websites from tracking me?" to "How do I turn on the Do-not-track feature?".

skeptix

(1) As written, the title is incorrect. This page seems to be an article about 'how to enable/disable the Do-Not-Track feature.' That DOES NOT prevent websites from tracking users.

If, on the other hand, you want this page to explain how users can avoid web tracking, I suggest these changes:

(2) The page should VERY EXPLICITLY STATE that DNT does not offer any guarantees whatsoever about tracking, and that the DNT specifications do not even give a formal definition for tracking.

(3) The page should list EFFECTIVE strategies to prevent website tracking.

For instance, I'd recommend this:

- Install the AdBlock plug-in.

- Disable javascript entirely, or at least use a plug-in like NoScript which disables javascript by default, but lets users enable it on a case-by-case basis.

- Disable cookies entirely, or at least delete ALL cookies every time firefox closes.

- Disable Flash entirely, or at least use a plug-in like FlashBlock or NoScript which disables flash by default, but lets users enable it on a case-by-case basis.

- If you must run Flash, then at least run a plug-in such as BetterPrivacy that can delete Flash LSOs automatically every time firefox closes.

- Do not use a search engine while logged in.

- Use Tor ( torproject.org )

I know my list is not complete, but it's a lot better than recommending an untested technology that offers no guarantees.

(3) Give the users an idea of how to determine if their solution works. Things which come to mind include:

- The evercookie test: http://samy.pl/evercookie/

- The EFF's Panopticlick project: http://panopticlick.eff.org/

skeptix said

As written, the title is incorrect. This page seems to be an article about 'how to enable/disable the Do-Not-Track feature.' That DOES NOT prevent websites from tracking users.

Maybe, but an attractive title is the best way to make this new feature known.

DNT does not offer any guarantees whatsoever about tracking

I agree that this can be included as a note in the article.

The page should list EFFECTIVE strategies to prevent website tracking.

There were already two planned articles about this topic: "How can I improve my privacy and security?" (see this thread that must no longer be used) and "Staying safe on the web" (see this thread that must no longer be used) as Privacy and Security are closely related.
But unfortunately, as there's a shortage of volunteers, KB editors focus on improving top viewed existing articles.
If you want to contribute to this article with your ideas, see Improving articles.

skeptix

I would love to contribute, though I am reluctant to make big edits until the final home of the article is selected.

In the short term, I think I will contribute to this page

skeptix said

I would love to contribute, though I am reluctant to make big edits until the final home of the article is selected.

Consider this article as the final home and the DNT feature only as one section (DNT is already treated in Settings for privacy, browsing history and do-not-track). We can rename the article later if the future content is not completely related to the title or move some part of content to another article.

I agree that this should be the 'final home' for this content and that adding the suggestions above for effective prevention of web site tracking would be a great improvement.

skeptix

Cool. I'm working on it... Might take a week, I've got a lot on my plate now :)

I think a title change is all we should do to this article. Maybe we should just rename this to "How do I turn the Do-not-track feature on?" The other articles that Scoobidiver mentions are the best candidates for additional information about things other than the DNT feature. This article would link to them.

Also, I would urge presenting this information in a way that isn't alarmist. Turning off javascript, flash, and cookies entirely is like asking people to experience the web as it was in 1994 and not necessary. But people should know how tracking works, what it's used for and how they can take steps to avoid it if they wish.

I would rename this article to "How do I turn on the Do-not-track feature?" or maybe "What is the Do-not-track feature and how do I turn it on?"

Here is mozilla.org's article, in case it helps: http://dnt.mozilla.org/

AliceWyman said

I would rename this article to "How do I turn on the Do-not-track feature?" or maybe "What is the Do-not-track feature and how do I turn it on?" Here is mozilla.org's article, in case it helps: http://dnt.mozilla.org/

Thanks Alice, "How do I turn on the Do-not-track feature?" is much better. I think we should go with that.

Ok, changing the name of this to "How do I turn on the Do-not-track feature?"

How do localizers know that this article has been renamed? This renaming is important as it changes the article scope.

I filed bug 692502 with no target milestone equivalent to a WONTFIX.

I wouldn't assume no target milestone = wontfix. I'd assume it means that it hasn't been triaged. Commenting in the bug...

HomerDPoe

So, how do I turn on the Do-not-track feature?

Did you read the whole article including the How do I turn the Do-not-track feature on? section at the end?

Oh no! HomerDPoe, you must have been using Firefox 3.6. I just checked the article and the actual instructions are hidden for fx 3.6 users. I'll fix that. Thanks!

Michael Verdi wrote in the changelog: "Put all steps before the screenshot. Important for Win because if you don't see that last step to click ok the setting won't be applied."

Although the observation is true, I disagree because after having closed the Options window, you won't see what it's in the screenshot. In addition, this change of philosophy will impact many articles.

(For the record)

Revision id: 18411
Created: Nov 4, 2011 11:16:48 AM
Creator: Verdi
Reviewed: Yes
Ready for localization: No
Reviewed: Nov 16, 2011 4:52:42 PM
Reviewed by: mluna
Is approved? Yes
Is current revision? Yes
azul347

Hi There,

I'm a developer for a web media company and a strong advocate to ensure consumers have the option NOT to be tracked online. Is there documentation where I can check if this feature is enabled so that I can make sure OBA cookies are not being used in our network?

Pijuvwy

Not fixed yet, apparently. It's entitled "How do I turn on the Do-not-track feature?" but fails to answer the question. So, how do I turn it on? Presumably I have to upgrade to FF4.

I updated this article and the template to use Do Not Track instead of do-not-track so that it matches the mozilla.org page that links to it. I also changed the link in the template from a video of Gary Kovac's TED talk to point to the Lightbeam page instead since that's more relevant now.

This article needed an update anyway. I made a new revision which doesn't include the in-content preferences.

Marko said

This article needed an update anyway. I made a new revision which doesn't include the in-content preferences.

Thanks,

I also posted a discussion thread and a "Need changes" entry for the Settings for privacy, browsing history and do-not-track article.

I approved the pending revision, marked it ready to localize and set up a "Need changes" entry for fx36 Mac and Linux screenshots. I also edited the thread title to "Firefox 36 changes (was: In-content preferences for fx36 deferred)"

I added a Linux screenshot.

Marko said

I added a Linux screenshot.

I approved it "RFL" and updated the Need change entry.

pemadega

I have Tell Websites to Not Track checked. I have gone to FF Main Menu>Tools>Options>Privacy Tab and Clicked Show Cookies Button 247realmedia.com 33across.com acuityplatform.com acxiom.com adadvisor.net adap.tv adhaven.com ads.adacado.com imiclk.com p-td.com realmedia.com ru4.com yieldoptimizer.com Are all there. I choose to remove all or remove each one individually, and guess what none are removed. 2/22/2015

We're sorry to hear about this issue. This forum is reserved for article edits, so you won't get much visibility here.

Please post your issue to the support forum where you can receive assistance from our support community.

This article does not include its own Table of Contents. It includes /kb/templatetracking (Template:Tracking) which has its own TOC. The result is that this article's TOC only includes the two sections within the template and leaves out this article's last section (last two sections in Fx35 and below). This might cause some users to overlook the additional section(s) left out of the TOC.

I have an edit pending [*] to remove the TOC from the template but that would mean this article will no longer include any TOC.

Related discussion: /en-US/kb/templatetracking/discuss/6027 Using TOCs within templates

[*]See /en-US/kb/templatetracking/history. The template's TOC was removed Mar 20, 2015.

/en-US/kb/templatetracking (Template:Tracking) no longer has a TOC so we can add one to this article.

I made a revision to add an introductory paragraph, a TOC and a "Tracking" heading for the template. I also added "privacy" as a keyword and revised the search summary a bit.

Honoring DNT is voluntary. Should we mention that there is another feature (Tracking Protection) that actively blocks tracking?

I tried to figure out a good way to mention Tracking Protection in this article but couldn't. It's hard because the information explaining about Do Not Track is in the template.

Since Tracking Protection is now mentioned in the Tips to protect your online privacy article, I decided to add a link in this article's Introductory paragraph :

Firefox lets you tell websites that you do not want them to track your browsing behavior. This article explains what tracking is and how to turn on the Do Not Track feature.


I left it pending review.

I noticed that in Firefox 49, the Do Not Track setting changed from "Use Do Not Track" to "Always apply Do Not Track". I also noticed that you need to click the OK button, at least on Windows, to apply the change. Can anyone with Mac, Linux confirm that the OK button is shown? Here's a Windows screenshot: Fx49Privacy-DoNotTrack

Fx49Privacy-DoNotTrack

I have a revision pending that includes the above screenshot for Fx49 with the added step to click the OK button.

I self-approved my pending revision and marked it RFL.