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#1 2012-03-05 14:38:17

Anonymous
Anonymous

Google tricks

When I launch Google (using http://www.google.com/webhp?hl=en) from any of the tunnels and request a search I invariably receive a page where the principal entries are French language.   Cookies and javascript are disabled in my browser, all the relevant caches are cleared and my operating system language and user agent accept language  are set to en-us.    How does Google know that my location is in France?

#2 2012-03-05 15:34:18

Zero
Moderator

Re: Google tricks

Some of our IP addresses are incorrectly geolocated in France by Google, because some users provide their address in a form and that data is passed on to companies like Google. But that's just some IP addresses, not all of them, so it's probably unrelated to your issue.

Maybe you have downloaded your web browser in French ? The user agent string contains the installation language.
Also, modern browsers have a feature that allows web sites to query your location. There are multiple sources for this location:
- Internal GPS device
- OS location setting
- Even Wifi network names could be used to locate you

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#3 2012-03-05 15:58:00

disto
Anonymous

Re: Google tricks

They do that to me on Youtube too. Very annoying.

My OS is in and has always been in English, same for Firefox, and I have no prefered language set.

I do have a google account but I don't think I told them were I live, and I usually don't stay logged...

BTW, your recaptcha also is in French...

#4 2012-03-05 16:22:44

Anonymous
Anonymous

Re: Google tricks

Thanks for the pointers.  My browser is an English language version of Firefox and my wireless network is called “Home”, which I guess does not give away a lot about my geographic location!
Am I correct to think that with javascript disabled it should not be possible to determine things like my OS location setting?
Like the previous poster, I receive the recapcha in French, too.

#5 2012-03-05 22:54:36

Zero
Moderator

Re: Google tricks

Youtube and recaptcha are owned by Google.

I don't know how it works exactly in the browser.

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#6 2012-03-27 13:49:46

Anonymous
Anonymous

Re: Google tricks

Anonymous wrote:

When I launch Google (using http://www.google.com/webhp?hl=en) from any of the tunnels and request a search I invariably receive a page where the principal entries are French language.   Cookies and javascript are disabled in my browser, all the relevant caches are cleared and my operating system language and user agent accept language  are set to en-us.    How does Google know that my location is in France?


In about:config:
Maybe general.useragent.locale is set to fr, or geolocation is enabled ?

#7 2012-03-28 20:10:10

Anonymous
Anonymous

Re: Google tricks

Thanks for the suggestions.  In my case the general.useragent.locale is set to EN-US and geo.enabled is set to false.  There's obviously something else which can serve to idetify a user's location.

#8 2012-04-01 17:50:51

Anonymous
Anonymous

Re: Google tricks

Anonymous wrote:

Thanks for the suggestions.  In my case the general.useragent.locale is set to EN-US and geo.enabled is set to false.  There's obviously something else which can serve to idetify a user's location.

Ok. So you you have set geo.enabled tio false.
But have you set geo.wifi.uri to 127.0.0.1 too ?

besides that, you should investigate which kind of informations your browser is revealing to the internet(http headers, etc).

I advice to tes tit on the following sites, with javascript and Java fully enabled (and of course noscript disabled);

http://ip-check.info/?lang=en
http://www.stayinvisible.com/
http://checker.samair.ru/
http://browserspy.dk/
http://analyzemy.net/

http://proxy-check.squabbel.com/
http://test.anonymity.com/
http://my-addr.com/my-ip-and-proxy-head … /my_ip.php
www.webtask.org


http://samy.pl/mapxss
http://ip-analyzer.info/lookup.htm


http://www.frostjedi.com/terra/scripts/ … ode=utf16/
http://www.auditmypc.com/digital-footprint.asp
http://tools-on.net/privacy.shtml
http://www.gurusheaven.de/index_sicherheit.html


about geolocation:
http://www.dephormation.org.uk/
http://www.dephormation.org.uk/?page=37#Geolocation
http://npdoty.name/location/
https://www.pcworld.com/article/192803/ … ivacy.html
https://www.wilderssecurity.com/showthr … eolocation
http://samy.pl/mapxss
http://news.cnet.com/8301-1009_3-201060 … ollection/

And a guy seems to have had the same problem as you:
https://www.wilderssecurity.com/showthr … eolocation

Maybe you can try to install on your browser (if it's FF) the Torbutton addon + noscprit or he JondoFox addon (this one including noscript and others). In the last case, backup your profile, particular your saved password and your installed addons

#9 2012-04-02 08:23:37

Anonymous
Anonymous

Re: Google tricks

Thanks for taking so much trouble to provide some good advice.   My browser (FF) gives away nothing of any consequence when I connect to any of the sites you’ve mentioned.   In addition, I generally surf with NoScript enabled which ought to make it difficult for Google to dig very deep into my browser.

I don’t have the TOR button because it limits the browser’s functionality just a little too much.  There has to come a point when privacy must give way to usability.   I’ve seen various suggestions for Firefox settings that claim to improve privacy, but in several cases I’ve found that they actually have a harmful effect when checking profiling clues with sites like http://www.panopticlick.eff.org.

I’m going to look through the geolocation links that you’ve provided.   Thanks again.

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