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[METHOD] Removing Flash Cookies To Avoid Leaving Blackhat Footprints

Discussion in 'Black Hat SEO' started by teeniegenie, Feb 23, 2011.

  1. teeniegenie

    teeniegenie Supreme Member

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    I have seen some posts lately demonstrating that some of you are not aware of FLASH cookies. Yes, it is almost intuitive to clear your cookies but that isn't enough. I'll briefly explain what flash cookies are and how I avoid them. I don't claim for this to be comprehensive in regards to managing flash cookies but it has worked well for me. Anyone with an improvement on this method is invited to add it to this thread.

    WHAT ARE FLASH COOKIES?
    A large amount of websites you surf everyday use Adobe Flash to track users on their site and store information about them. However, unlike traditional cookies, flash cookies are not deleted when you do the typical "clear cookies" routine on your web browser. These flash cookies are also sometimes known as "super cookies" around the web.

    HOW TO REMOVE FLASH COOKIES
    For those of you who use Fire Fox, I highly recommend installing one of two add-ons:

    Better Privacy or
    Click & Clean

    I like Better Privacy the best. It has a setting to delete flash cookies at a regular interval as you surf around the Internet. Mine kicks in and wipes the cookies out every 3 minutes. :)

    Another option is to open up your Flash player on your computer. Go to the "Global Storage Settings Panel" in the list on the left and find the option that says "Allow third-party Flash content to store data on your computer" and unselect it. This will prevent additional cookies from being added to your computer in the future.

    To remove flash cookies already on your computer go to the "Website Storage Settings Panel" and delete them one-by-one (kind of a pain if you are doing this for the first time - I had over 800 when I first discovered these suckers). If you have a ton I recommend doing the Mozilla plug-ins instead and you can delete all of them in one shot.


    If you want to do some additional reading on this subject, I recommend these two links:

    http://www.wired.com/epicenter/2009/08/you-deleted-your-cookies-think-again/

    http://www.itworld.com/internet/118784/how-murder-a-flash-cookie-zombie?page=0,1

    Hope that helps. Remember, I don't claim for this to be comprehensive, so please feel free to chip in. This is just what has worked for me so far and I wanted to give back to BHW for all that I've learned.

    Good luck!
     
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  2. Yukinari84

    Yukinari84 Elite Member

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    Nice post.

    Footprints and how to minimize them are subjects that a lot of marketers neglect.

    When I started out, I learned the hard way about footprints, so it's great to see members giving away tips like this.:)
     
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  3. donduck

    donduck Junior Member

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    I use ccleaner
     
  4. badut jenaka

    badut jenaka Regular Member

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    ccleaner not wipe that flash cookies..better use ff addon op suggested..:)
     
  5. kez1000

    kez1000 Supreme Member

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    I use better privacy and cc cleaner - my browser is always squeeky clean
     
  6. beazt

    beazt Power Member

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    Another simple method to clear flash cookies is by using the following URL:

    Code:
    http://www.macromedia.com/support/documentation/en/flashplayer/help/settings_manager07.html
    Just visit and click on 'Delete All' options and you have just removed all of the footprints
     
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  7. teeniegenie

    teeniegenie Supreme Member

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    Ah, I forgot to mention ccleaner. Thanks for mentioning it. I was aware it existed but have never used it personally. Hmmm, so there is a discrepancy on whether ccleaner wipes flash cookies based on the comments made above.

    It looks like the developer of ccleaner claims to clean flash cookies:

    http://www.piriform.com/docs/ccleaner/ccleaner-settings/cleaning-flash-cookies

    Anyone want to dispute this claim or is the common consensus that ccleaner is enough to wipe out flash cookies?
     
  8. dantheman1370

    dantheman1370 Registered Member

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    Same here. It's great.
     
  9. CyberDilemma

    CyberDilemma Regular Member

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    Ccleaner and the Better Privacy firefox addon will erase all flash/LSO cookies but they will not erase evercookies. Evercookies are persistent and will regenerate themselves after clearing cookies by normal means, even when using multiple browsers. Someone has recently invented a firefox plugin to quarantine the evercookies when using the private browsing mode.You can read about it here...

    Code:
    http://www.securityweek.com/nevercookie-eats-evercookie-new-firefox-plugin

    and download here...

    Code:
    http://nevercookie.anonymizer.com/
     
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  10. Aaric

    Aaric Elite Member

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    Why not to just disable Adobe FLASH plug in? will it help to avoid storage of any flash cookies.
    I have settings in adobe flash setting manager to deny all cookies and storage. >
    Code:
    macromedia.com/support/documentation/en/flashplayer/help/settings_manager07.html
     
  11. CyberDilemma

    CyberDilemma Regular Member

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    The problem with that is every time you use Ccleaner or Better Privacy, it erases your global settings (settings.sol), unless you make an exception for it.
     
  12. dolomoney

    dolomoney Junior Member

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    This^^
     
  13. CyberDilemma

    CyberDilemma Regular Member

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