Pinterest knew my name

So, as often happens, I clicked a link to a Pinterest page.

Pinterest popped up a javascript box welcoming me by name. Then they sent me email at my Gmail address asking me to confirm it, and within a couple of minutes another spammier one with “18 pins you’ll want to see!”

So much for my efforts at Internet data control :frowning:

At the time I was using Windows 10 Pro, with Firefox 61.0 64-bit running NoScript and AdBlock+ plugins.


Digital exhaust is extremely difficult to control.

Do you use VPN?

OK, they got my info from Google.

I can tell because Pinterest has my Gmail profile pic associated with the account they created without my permission. I don’t use it anywhere else.



No NAT, either. I have IANA legal addresses on all four of the computers in my work office (windows desktop, windows laptop, linux desktop, Apple desktop).

But I’m pretty paranoid about javascript… I run the minimum I need for the sites I use. For example here I manually enable before each time I make a post. I had temporarily enabled when it happened, and I have the minimum required for gmail permanently enabled.


Interesting, thanks for posting. I, also, have a gmail, and have visited Pinterest, but haven’t noticed anything like your experience. I will pay more attention.

Your gmail is in your own name? If so, that doesn’t make a lot of sense to me…

Basically I rarely use the same ID and personal data on multiple sites; this lets me recognize data leaks.

But yes, Google does know my first name, as does Boing Boing. It’s in my profile in both places. Not in my address, in my user profile.

I have an effectively infinite number of email addresses, as I have root privs on multiple large email servers, so I create and delete them on the fly fairly often. But I have less than half a dozen gmail addresses, and I usually don’t have more than 30-40 personas active on the Internet at a time.

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You’re trying to keep your digital footprint to a minimum by using extensions the vast majority don’t use or wouldn’t know how to so you obviously care (seriously though, use a VPN). However, why in the name of all that’s holy are you using gmail? Get off there and use a more secure email service like protonmail.

ETA: Then again i would suggest getting off windows 10 too, it’s certainly not for the privacy conscious. Or if you’re using it with a microsoft account then switch to a local (offline) one.


Stay far away from here. :wink:


Your parents named you Medievalist?


Win10 is necessary for some of my work, but I’m OS independent, computers are just tools to me. I use sledgehammers, machinist’s hammers, smith’s hammers, piano hammers, whatever is to hand that’s best suited for the job.

I don’t see any advantage to using a VPN for web browsing; https is secure enough for me. I’d say 99% of my traffic is encrypted with either ssh or https.

EDIT:. I certainly see your point in re: Gmail, though!

One of the scariest films ever made!

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Hammer time!

Sorry, I had to. The urge was just too great.


Thing is, i see an IP address as a sensitive piece of personal identifiable information that i’m just not comfortable with any old site having access to. Not to mention states ramping up their surveillance (presuming you’re not a specific target here or all bets are off). Use of a VPN surely must be added to the tool chest of the privacy conscious. I didn’t use one for far too long but it seemed silly to be using script blockers and whatnot while my IP address was being pumped out to whoever wanted it. Anyhoo, torrentfreak always does a good roundup of current VPN services.

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That deserves more likes. :smiley:

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