What is Web Beacon/Bug ?4 min read

A Web Beacon is also known as Web bug. It is a transparent or hidden graphic image with size 1 x 1 Pixel found on website or email to monitor user behaviour.it can collect information such as the IP address of PC, the time it was viewed and its duration, a type of browser that made request and cookies that was previously sent by the host.A web beacon is also used for tracking Email

How its Works?

A web beacon is usually in size of 1×1 pixel, the user cannot able to this, also could be the same color of background or transparent. When a user open a website or email, a small image not viewable by user. But browser or email reader find it and automatically download it to user computer like any other images. When downloading a image, the user’s computer to send a request to the host company’s server, where the source image was stored. This request would provide identifying information about the computer, allowing the host to keep track of the user.

Beacon API

The Beacon API (Application programming interface) is a candidate recommendation of the World Wide Web Consortium, the standards organization for the web.It is a standardized set of protocols designed to allow web developers to track the activity of users without slowing down website response times. It does this by sending tracking information back to the beacon’s host server after the user has navigated away from the webpage.

Use of the Beacon API allows tracking without interfering with or delaying navigation away from the site, and is invisible to the end-user.Support for the Beacon API was introduced into Google’s Chrome browser in November 2014 and Mozilla’s Firefox browser in February 2014.

Web Beacon Usage

An example of web beacon usage is when a company that owns a collection of websites uses beacons to track how users travel among the websites within the company’s network. This data might useful for developer to make their website for efficient and easier.

Web beacons are generally used by a third party to monitor the activity of a website. A Web beacon can be found by viewing the source code and looking for any IMG tags that load from a different server than current site. Turning off the browser’s cookies will prevent beacons from tracking the user’s activity.

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