Easily Transmit Your Web History to Yahoo! [groovyTips]

JAVA Logo - Sun microsystemsI hate it when companies try to install sneak software on my computer. Particularly is this true when the software they are unethically trying to sneak onto my PC is something I would never elect to install either because it’s junk, contains spyware/malicious code, or violates my privacy in some way.


For example, this morning my JAVA Client from Sun Microsystems notified me a security update was available.   I always pay close attention to security updates especially if they impact my browser. Since the JAVA JRE provides JAVA services for IE and Firefox, I approved the prompt to go download and install the latest copy of the SUN JAVA Client.  And that’s when Sun started peddling software.

JAVA Security Update - Prompt for Yahoo! Toolbar install and Privacy Policy


Once the JAVA security update began, I was presented with the option to install the Yahoo! Toolbar.  Normally I would only be mildly irritated by this kind of behavior. However what annoyed me was that by default the Opt In or Check box to install the Toolbar is checked. Further, I took a look at the Yahoo! Toolbars privacy policy and discovered that the little nugget of goodness SUN and YAHOO! were trying to sneak onto my computer also has some serious privacy concerns.


Excerpt from Yahoo Privacy Policy: 

Web Usage

  • Some versions of Yahoo! Toolbar allow you to share information with Yahoo! about sites you visit to improve Yahoo! services.
  • When you consent to this feature, Yahoo! Toolbar will transmit the following information to Yahoo!: complete web site addresses (URLs) from all the web sites you visit, referring and redirect URLs, unique Toolbar identifier, product performance data like page load speed, and other information provided by your browser including domain cookies.
  • Information collected through the web usage feature may be associated with your Yahoo! ID if you are logged into Yahoo!.
  • All domain cookies are transmitted automatically to us by your browser when Web Usage is enabled. Yahoo! selectively records only certain cookies with Yahoo! Toolbar usage data and does not store cookies that contain or are associated with Yahoo! account IDs.
  • You can disable the Web Usage feature at any time. Directions are found in the Yahoo! Toolbar Help area and from the Options menu in Yahoo! Toolbar.


Yahoo! LogoSome might ask “MrGroove, why are you getting so excited about this?  You can just uncheck the box and not install Toolbar.”    That’s true however I wouldn’t consider myself to be the average PC user either.  I’m looking for stuff like this each time I install a piece of software, but that’s usually not the case for the average computer user out there.


So, the next time you install a piece of software, or an update, be sure to pay attention and don’t just click Next, Next, Next.  Also, Read the fine print even from so-called industry leaders.  Otherwise, you never know what might set up camp on your hard drive.



  1. shockersh

    October 20, 2009 at 3:47 pm

    Not to say this isn’t sham but, I’m going to guess ALL the toolbars out there do the same thing. Still, they should not have it install by default. That’s lame.

  2. Engraved Gifts

    February 29, 2012 at 1:48 pm

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