Incognito mode can still be detected in Chrome, Google has not been able to take care of it as of yet

Incognito is a private browsing mode that is enabled in different browsers. Users use this mode for several purposes like bypassing content paywalls, overcoming different content filters and limitations, or to simply avoid going through the security steps if possible. Some modes even work against aggressive tracking features that some websites use to block these sites from tracking the users and monetizing the traffic at their site.

These issues cause serious damage to the financial status of these websites, and these are the reasons that prompt websites to employ methods to detect the incognito modes and block them as much as possible, like integrating scripts that can detect the incognito modes easily.

Last year, Google tried to take care of this issue and hamper the efforts of these websites to block the users from using the incognito modes.

When Google released its Chrome 76 in July 2019, they incorporated an update that prevented the websites to use a FileSystem API. This FileSystem detects the browser mode that a person uses while browsing.

Before the release of Chrome 76, the FileSystem API was not available in the incognito mode. The operators of websites had to query this API to look into the browser mode that the user was using.

So, when Google released the Chrome 76, it partially activated the FileSystem API for the incognito mode also, such that there was a hard limit of 120 MB storage space amount that incognito windows could access.

However, this update did not completely serve the purpose and within a week, programmers discovered Google’s trick. So, in response, they developed some scripts that could probe Chrome 76’s FileSystem API to see the amount of storage space that a website could access. If it was 120 MB, these programmers would instantly know that the user was using incognito mode.

Programmers released two more scripts in August 2019 and they became very popular with online content publishers.

Considering the situation, Google had vowed in August 2019 to solve this issue to block the scripts and other methods that websites use to block incognito mode detections.

Sadly, Google has not yet been able to fulfill this promise. Websites are still able to detect incognito mode in Chrome, all the Chromium-based browsers like Microsoft Edge, Vivaldi, Brave, and Opera and all the browsers which share the core of Chrome's codebase.

Now some developers have shared the scripts from last year to the non-Chrome browsers like Safari and Firefox so that they allow the sites to block the users in incognito mode. So, this is kind of urgent now for Google to fix this issue as soon as possible.

Recently, Google has faced a class-action lawsuit because of its ad division being accused of tracking the browsing activity of users even if they were using incognito mode.

Now, it is a well-known fact that advertisers like Google use indicators to track the users in all the modes. Advertisers and website operators will still be able to see information like IP addresses and other traffic data. So, blocking the incognito mode may not really stop them from tracking the users' activity, but if Google comes up with a solution for this issue, it will be good for their image with the users and help in redeeming their faith.



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