Screenshots - Google Toolbar Continues Tracking Browsing Even When Users "Disable" the Toolbar via "Manage Add-Ons"
Google Toolbar Tracks Browsing Even After Users Choose "Disable" - Ben Edelman

This page gives screenshots showing that Google Toolbar continues tracking a user's browsing even after a user specifically disables the Google Toolbar via the IE8 "Manage Add-Ons" dialog box. All testing occurred on January 21, 2010.

See also discussion in main article, as well as a screen-capture video.


The Google Toolbar - Installed

I activate IE's Manage Add-ons feature. (Screenshot taken from video at 0:06.)

Google Toolbar features an


Selecting Google Toolbar

I choose the Google Toolbar entry in the list of add-ons, and I press the Disable button. (Screenshot taken from video at 0:11.)


Selecting Google Toolbar - Additional Components

A second Internet Explorer popup appears, offering the options shown below. I leave the checkboxes in their default settings, just as shown here, and I press Disable to close the dialog box. (Screenshot taken from video at 0:12.)


Further Browsing

I browse various pages on the site. (Screenshot taken from video at 0:35.)

Google Toolbar disappeared from view, as instructed.  Google Toolbar seems to be disabled.


Google Toolbar Continued Tracking My Browsing

Although I had asked that the Google Toolbar be "disable[d]," my network monitor revealed that Google Toolbar continued to transmit my browsing to its server. Indeed, as I requested various pages on the site, Google Toolbar transmitted the full URLs of those pages. See the "issues" line (highlighted in blue (reflecting my browsing to the page) as well as the "video" entry seven lines above. (Screenshot taken from video at 0:44.)