As you make your way across the internet, there are many sites which will discretely track the pages that you visit, whether it’s through displaying advertising or integration with social networks. If you don’t want third-parties to be able to track you, then there are a couple of browser extensions that you can install. These will block most tracking widgets, and, as a by-product, potentially speed up your internet browsing.
DoNotTrackMe by Abine
I’ve reviewed DoNotTrackMe before, back when it was called Do Not Track Plus. The extension has been updated since; not just with a new name but also with more companies to block.
It’s available for Chrome, Firefox, Safari and Internet Explorer.
I’ve not come across Disconnect before but it was mentioned in a Lifehacker article yesterday so I had a look at it. It works in a very similar way to DoNotTrackMe but additionally it will also force sites to use HTTPS where possible (in a similar way to HTTPS Everywhere). It can also be set to block some other types of third-party content that may or may not track you, although this is off by default.
Disconnect is for Chrome and Firefox – there’s currently no Safari or Internet Explorer extension.
Comparing the two
Having used both in turn, I prefer DoNotTrackMe – Disconnect’s font rendering looks weird and it doesn’t seem to be as configurable. I also already have an extension that forces HTTPS so I don’t need this feature.
DoNotTrackMe also has the advantage of working with more browsers, although neither works in Opera. I also found it to more effective at blocking Google’s +1 buttons on pages which Disconnect didn’t block.
I asked on Lifehacker how other people felt Disconnect compared to DoNotTrackMe, and the responses received suggest that Disconnect is a little lighter on resources, particularly in Google Chrome, and overall is less invasive.
Unfortunately I don’t think you could easily run both extensions at the same time, since they do the same job, so you would need to choose one. DoNotTrackMe would therefore be my recommendation.