Tracking the trackers

How to see what practices websites use to collect information about us

Date: June 24th, 2011, 11:30 -15:00

Venue: Hanse-Office, Avenue Palmerston 20, B-1000 Brussels

Target Group: Journalists, politicians and interested individuals

Requirements: Every participant should bring a notebook with Mozilla Firefox and WiFi reception or 3G Internet connection.


Registration: This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it


The Internet is not as anonymous as many users think. Websites employ tracking tools to recognise and identify users and their behaviour, in particular for advertising purposes. These tracking tools may infringe the users' privacy in unprecedented ways.

Usually users are not aware of being tracked on the Internet. They often don't know what website providers may find out about them, what they deduce from the users' behaviour and what consequences may occur. To foster the option for an individual decision on being tracked or not in different areas of the Internet, more transparency on tracking methods and possible ways to deal with them is necessary.

Scope of the workshop:

This workshop will discuss tracking technologies from multiple angles. Arnold P.C. Roosendaal from UVT will give a talk about the legal implications. He will explain which rights tracking services may infringe and how users can defend their privacy rights from a legal perspective.

Subsequently Rigo Wenning from W3C will demonstrate the tool "Privacy Dashboard" that enables users to evaluate whether websites collect information about their visitors.

Finally, Rigo Wenning and Ulrich König from ULD will guide the participants to use the "Privacy Dashboard" themselves. The Q&A session will also offer the opportunity to find out more about advantages and caveats of 'do-not-track' technology and other opt-out systems, including the legal implications of tracking. We will talk about the rights that are potentially violated by tracking users on the Internet and what users can do about it.


11:30 Meet and greet

12:00 Arnold P.C. Roosendaal: Legal implications of tracking and being tracked on the Internet

12:45 Coffee break

13:00 Rigo Wenning: Introducing the Privacy Dashboard - a tool for more transparency

13:45 Coffee break

14:00 Rigo Wenning & Ulrich König: Question & Answers - Trying out the Privacy Dashboard and other tools

15:00 End

Other interesting workshops nearby:

June 22-23, 2011: Law and Technology workshop: online tracking protection & Browsers, Brussels (no link available, yet)

June 27-28, 2011: Interdisciplinary Privacy Course - Summer semester 2011 - K.U.Leuven