Is Your ISP Tracking Your Browsing History?

What you surf on the internet is your personal matter, as long as you are not doing anything illegal. However, while you may assume that your data is private, the truth is that your ISP (Internet Service Provider) can still access your browsing history. With thousands of customers, ISPs may not be actively looking at your browsing data. However, they can definitely access your browsing history if the need arises. To know if your ISP is tracking your browsing history, here are some important things to understand.

Why ISPs track your browsing data

There are multiple reasons why your ISP maybe tracking your browsing data. It is possible that browsing data of users may be used to generate revenue. What some ISPs do is that they compile browsing data in an anonymous manner and sell it in bulk to marketing companies. There, the data can be used to generate insights about user behavior and other analytical reports.

Another key reason is that ISPs may be required by law to provide information about a specific individual in case it is demanded by authorities such as police or court. In such cases, your browsing history may be shared with the concerned government agency.

There are also ISPs that are demanding a premium to secure your privacy. Customers who don’t opt for the premium service will have their browsing history stored and accessible whenever needed.

Data laws in the country

Whether or not ISPs track your browsing history and what they can do with it depends on the data and privacy laws of the respective country. For example, if your country has strict anti-piracy laws, you could get into trouble by downloading copyrighted stuff such as books, songs and movies.

Risk of hacker attacks

In most cases, it is generally accepted that your ISP is not using your personal data in a wrongful manner. However, things can still go wrong if, for example, there’s a hacker attack on your ISP’s servers. In such cases, your private browsing date may be compromised. There is nothing that you or your ISP can do in such situations.

Can your ISP see your passwords?

Your ISP can see your password only if it’s sent over the internet without encryption. This usually happens when you login on unsecure sites that do not have HTTPS. Even assuming that your ISP will not do such things, a hacker can always intercept your data sent on unsecure websites. Make sure you avoid transacting on sites that do not have HTTPS. Entering passwords on HTTPS sites is completely safe. It cannot be known to your ISP or anyone else, as it is done via advanced encryption.

What can you do to secure your browsing history?

There are many options that can be used to secure your browsing history. A free option is Tor Browser that protects your privacy by routing internet data via multiple servers located globally. For more advanced security, the natural choice will be VPNs. These VPNs may charge a subscription fee, but you will have complete peace of mind that your browsing history is 100% safe.

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