Web-tracking compliance: websites’ level of confidence in the use of information-gathering technologies

David Martínez*, Eusebi Calle, Albert Jové, Cristina Pérez-Solà

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleResearchpeer-review

3 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

With the emergence of new technologies and the generalized use of social media, corporations have an invested economic interest in employing web-tracking techniques, but there is also the issue of protecting users’ privacy. In this field of research, only few articles introduce methods to evaluate website compliance in the use of current web-tracking techniques. Moreover, evaluating the level of compliance requires, in the majority of cases, manually implementing an extensive data analysis. In this paper, we present four new algorithms (CIA, CDA, BDA, and SCA) and a novel measure (WLoC) to evaluate user tracking compliance in websites and the level of confidence in the use of information-gathering technologies, by employing the recently published Website Evidence Collector (WEC) software from the European Data Protection Supervisor (EDPS). The paper also showcases a case study of the top 500 websites most visited by Alexa in Spain to evaluate the performance of the presented algorithms and metrics. Results reveal a novel procedure for obtaining categorized websites’ compliance and confidence levels of a set of websites under the current European legislation, thus updating and enhancing some of the previous research work.

Original languageEnglish
Article number102873
Number of pages13
JournalComputers and Security
Volume122
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Nov 2022

Keywords

  • compliance
  • cookies
  • level of confidence
  • privacy
  • web beacons
  • web tracking

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