Device fingerprinting software collects hints about a user’s device (such as its operating system, installed fonts and plugins, screen resolution, and more) and creates a unique profile of the devices used to browse the web. The data points are then compiled into a hash, which allows for the identification of a specific device with high accuracy. Device fingerprinting can also be combined with other analytics and tracking methods to provide more precise results.
Most commonly, device fingerprinting is used for e-commerce and website analytics. The technology is effective at identifying returning visitors and providing marketers with valuable audience profiles. It can also help to stop fraud, including multi-accounting, transaction fraud, loyalty program abuse, and more.
Exploring the Ethical Implications of Device Fingerprinting Software
The use of device fingerprinting is controversial, however. It raises privacy concerns, as it may be used to track a person’s behavior without their knowledge or consent. It can also be misused by malicious actors to exploit vulnerabilities in browsers and other software.
Users can mitigate device fingerprinting by using virtual private networks and limiting their online activity, but it is impossible to completely prevent it. This is because the information needed to perform device fingerprinting is passed each time a web page loads in a browser.
SEON extracts 500+ different parameters from a user’s device, and the list is constantly growing. These are used to generate a hash, which is then compared with known device fingerprints stored in a database. This enables SEON to identify unusual patterns and anomalies that would otherwise be missed by other means.