Tracking forum users: how?

Discussion in 'NZ Computing' started by Boppy, Jun 13, 2011.

  1. Boppy

    Boppy Guest

    There is a travel site called TripAdvisor that claims to recognise
    false reviews. I've heard of members trying to post positive reviews
    about their own motels and getting busted. Even though they don't have
    a static IP address, how would the forum admins recognise the same
    posters?

    Someone in the industry suggested that it might be to do with the
    computer's mac address. How do forum administrators actually see this
    information to block users?

    There is a product called Hide My Mac Address. How do you know if the
    programme is hiding the crucial information? You can do a "whatismyIP"
     
    Boppy, Jun 13, 2011
    #1
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  2. Boppy

    Boppy Guest

    On Jun 13, 12:16 pm, Allistar <> wrote:
    > Boppy wrote:
    > > There is a travel site called TripAdvisor that claims to recognise
    > > false reviews. I've heard of members trying to post positive reviews
    > > about their own motels and getting busted. Even though they don't have
    > > a static IP address, how would the forum admins recognise the same
    > > posters?

    >
    > > Someone in the industry suggested that it might be to do with the
    > > computer's mac address. How do forum administrators actually see this
    > > information to block users?

    >
    > > There is a product called Hide My Mac Address. How do you know if the
    > > programme is hiding the crucial information? You can do a "whatismyIP"

    >
    > Your MAC address is not broadcast in IP packets, only your IP address is
    > (and then, only the IP address of the public facing router). From what I
    > know your MAC address is only shared with the closest DHCP server and
    > doesn't go passed that point.
    > --
    > A.


    So how would they know which computer is used to post a review? Even
    if you change locations or use a t-stick modem, they still know.
     
    Boppy, Jun 13, 2011
    #2
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  3. Boppy

    Dave Doe Guest

    In article <b7429628-4dc6-42f6-be10-b974a2e67fd8
    @f31g2000pri.googlegroups.com>, , Boppy says...
    >
    > On Jun 13, 12:16 pm, Allistar <> wrote:
    > > Boppy wrote:
    > > > There is a travel site called TripAdvisor that claims to recognise
    > > > false reviews. I've heard of members trying to post positive reviews
    > > > about their own motels and getting busted. Even though they don't have
    > > > a static IP address, how would the forum admins recognise the same
    > > > posters?

    > >
    > > > Someone in the industry suggested that it might be to do with the
    > > > computer's mac address. How do forum administrators actually see this
    > > > information to block users?

    > >
    > > > There is a product called Hide My Mac Address. How do you know if the
    > > > programme is hiding the crucial information? You can do a "whatismyIP"

    > >
    > > Your MAC address is not broadcast in IP packets, only your IP address is
    > > (and then, only the IP address of the public facing router). From what I
    > > know your MAC address is only shared with the closest DHCP server and
    > > doesn't go passed that point.
    > > --
    > > A.

    >
    > So how would they know which computer is used to post a review? Even
    > if you change locations or use a t-stick modem, they still know.


    Browser cookie most likely.

    --
    Duncan.
     
    Dave Doe, Jun 13, 2011
    #3
  4. Boppy

    AD. Guest

    On Jun 13, 11:33 am, Boppy <> wrote:
    > There is a travel site called TripAdvisor that claims to recognise
    > false reviews. I've heard of members trying to post positive reviews
    > about their own motels and getting busted. Even though they don't have
    > a static IP address, how would the forum admins recognise the same
    > posters?
    >
    > Someone in the industry suggested that it might be to do with the
    > computer's mac address. How do forum administrators actually see this
    > information to block users?


    That must be someone in the Travel industry rather than the IT
    industry. The only MAC addresses a web server will see on internet
    traffic is the address(es) of its router(s). MAC addresses are non
    routable.

    >
    > There is a product called Hide My Mac Address. How do you know if the
    > programme is hiding the crucial information? You can do a "whatismyIP"


    If there is a router (eg even your cheapo home broadband NAT box)
    between you and the server in question you are already hiding your
    computers MAC address. But your broadband routers MAC address will be
    visible to your ISPs router, and your ISPs router MAC address will be
    visible to the next router and so on.

    --
    Cheers
    Anton
     
    AD., Jun 13, 2011
    #4
  5. Boppy

    Squiggle Guest

    On 13/06/2011 11:33 a.m., Boppy threw some characters down the intarwebs:
    > There is a travel site called TripAdvisor that claims to recognise
    > false reviews. I've heard of members trying to post positive reviews
    > about their own motels and getting busted. Even though they don't have
    > a static IP address, how would the forum admins recognise the same
    > posters?
    >
    > Someone in the industry suggested that it might be to do with the
    > computer's mac address. How do forum administrators actually see this
    > information to block users?
    >
    > There is a product called Hide My Mac Address. How do you know if the
    > programme is hiding the crucial information? You can do a "whatismyIP"



    As others have said, MAC addresses are not the problem. It'll be a
    browser cookie or a flash cookie most likely. One look at that
    webpage's info and I can see they use markmonitor.com and may have
    others. I would also ask do they require you to register to post
    comments? and how much info do you have to provide them?
     
    Squiggle, Jun 13, 2011
    #5
  6. Boppy

    Guest

    On Mon, 13 Jun 2011 23:07:57 +1200, Richard <> wrote:

    >On 13/06/2011 9:24 p.m., EMB wrote:
    >>>

    >> Probably a Flash cookie - harder to get rid of than an ordinary browser
    >> cookie.

    >
    >and persist across all browser profiles in many cases too.


    I think you should be able to remove flash cookiesand prevent future
    storage by using this page - but I stand to be corrected :)

    http://www.macromedia.com/support/documentation/en/flashplayer/help/settings_manager03.html
     
    , Jun 13, 2011
    #6
  7. Boppy

    Richard Guest

    On 14/06/2011 10:31 a.m., wrote:
    > On Mon, 13 Jun 2011 23:07:57 +1200, Richard<> wrote:
    >
    >> On 13/06/2011 9:24 p.m., EMB wrote:
    >>>>
    >>> Probably a Flash cookie - harder to get rid of than an ordinary browser
    >>> cookie.

    >>
    >> and persist across all browser profiles in many cases too.

    >
    > I think you should be able to remove flash cookiesand prevent future
    > storage by using this page - but I stand to be corrected :)
    >
    > http://www.macromedia.com/support/documentation/en/flashplayer/help/settings_manager03.html


    Things dont work with them removed tho.

    I would like a way to redirect them to being browser user specific as I
    am often browsing with 2 or more firefox profiles for different accounts
    on facebook etc.
     
    Richard, Jun 14, 2011
    #7
  8. Boppy

    Squiggle Guest

    On 14/06/2011 10:31 a.m., threw some characters down the
    intarwebs:
    > On Mon, 13 Jun 2011 23:07:57 +1200, Richard <> wrote:
    >
    >> On 13/06/2011 9:24 p.m., EMB wrote:
    >>>>
    >>> Probably a Flash cookie - harder to get rid of than an ordinary browser
    >>> cookie.

    >>
    >> and persist across all browser profiles in many cases too.

    >
    > I think you should be able to remove flash cookiesand prevent future
    > storage by using this page - but I stand to be corrected :)
    >
    > http://www.macromedia.com/support/documentation/en/flashplayer/help/settings_manager03.html


    I have heard (but have not bothered to verify) that every time you
    update flash player those settings get reset.
     
    Squiggle, Jun 14, 2011
    #8
  9. Boppy

    Richard Guest

    On 14/06/2011 8:58 p.m., Squiggle wrote:
    > On 14/06/2011 10:31 a.m., threw some characters down the
    > intarwebs:
    >> On Mon, 13 Jun 2011 23:07:57 +1200, Richard<> wrote:
    >>
    >>> On 13/06/2011 9:24 p.m., EMB wrote:
    >>>>>
    >>>> Probably a Flash cookie - harder to get rid of than an ordinary browser
    >>>> cookie.
    >>>
    >>> and persist across all browser profiles in many cases too.

    >>
    >> I think you should be able to remove flash cookiesand prevent future
    >> storage by using this page - but I stand to be corrected :)
    >>
    >> http://www.macromedia.com/support/documentation/en/flashplayer/help/settings_manager03.html

    >
    > I have heard (but have not bothered to verify) that every time you
    > update flash player those settings get reset.


    So they are kinda like the "dont spy on me" options in chrome in that way?
     
    Richard, Jun 14, 2011
    #9
  10. Boppy

    Squiggle Guest

    On 14/06/2011 10:03 p.m., Richard threw some characters down the intarwebs:
    > On 14/06/2011 8:58 p.m., Squiggle wrote:
    >> On 14/06/2011 10:31 a.m., threw some characters down the
    >> intarwebs:
    >>> On Mon, 13 Jun 2011 23:07:57 +1200, Richard<> wrote:
    >>>
    >>>> On 13/06/2011 9:24 p.m., EMB wrote:
    >>>>>>
    >>>>> Probably a Flash cookie - harder to get rid of than an ordinary
    >>>>> browser
    >>>>> cookie.
    >>>>
    >>>> and persist across all browser profiles in many cases too.
    >>>
    >>> I think you should be able to remove flash cookiesand prevent future
    >>> storage by using this page - but I stand to be corrected :)
    >>>
    >>> http://www.macromedia.com/support/documentation/en/flashplayer/help/settings_manager03.html
    >>>

    >>
    >> I have heard (but have not bothered to verify) that every time you
    >> update flash player those settings get reset.

    >
    > So they are kinda like the "dont spy on me" options in chrome in that way?


    Not Sure, i'm not a chrome user at home. I gather it does the same
    thing, resets your privacy settings on every upgrade? Good to know.
     
    Squiggle, Jun 14, 2011
    #10
  11. Boppy

    Richard Guest

    On 14/06/2011 10:31 p.m., Squiggle wrote:
    > On 14/06/2011 10:03 p.m., Richard threw some characters down the intarwebs:
    >> On 14/06/2011 8:58 p.m., Squiggle wrote:
    >>> On 14/06/2011 10:31 a.m., threw some characters down the
    >>> intarwebs:
    >>>> On Mon, 13 Jun 2011 23:07:57 +1200, Richard<> wrote:
    >>>>
    >>>>> On 13/06/2011 9:24 p.m., EMB wrote:
    >>>>>>>
    >>>>>> Probably a Flash cookie - harder to get rid of than an ordinary
    >>>>>> browser
    >>>>>> cookie.
    >>>>>
    >>>>> and persist across all browser profiles in many cases too.
    >>>>
    >>>> I think you should be able to remove flash cookiesand prevent future
    >>>> storage by using this page - but I stand to be corrected :)
    >>>>
    >>>> http://www.macromedia.com/support/documentation/en/flashplayer/help/settings_manager03.html
    >>>>
    >>>
    >>> I have heard (but have not bothered to verify) that every time you
    >>> update flash player those settings get reset.

    >>
    >> So they are kinda like the "dont spy on me" options in chrome in that way?

    >
    > Not Sure, i'm not a chrome user at home. I gather it does the same
    > thing, resets your privacy settings on every upgrade? Good to know.


    I found its "phising filter" crap enabled on 2 occasions, I had turned
    it off last time. Only thing between the occasions was about 4 months of
    disuse, which I know it updated.

    The fact that it is on by default is bad enough.
     
    Richard, Jun 14, 2011
    #11
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