Team, Visitors, External Collaborators
Overall Objectives
Research Program
Application Domains
Highlights of the Year
New Software and Platforms
New Results
Bilateral Contracts and Grants with Industry
Partnerships and Cooperations
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Section: New Results

Browser fingerprinting

We obtained new results on the concept of browser fingerprinting. This is a major technique of Internet security that is widely used for many purposes such as tracking activities, enhancing authentication, detecting bots, just to name a few. These results contribute to the enhancement of security for distributed software systems.

Our contributions to browser fingerprinting include the following three elements. First, we collected 122K fingerprints from 2 346 browsers and studied their stability over more than 2 years. We showed that, despite frequent changes in the fingerprints, a significant fraction of browsers can be tracked over a long period of time. Second, we designed a test suite to evaluate fingerprinting countermeasures. We applied our test suite to 7 countermeasures, some of them claiming to generate consistent fingerprints, and show that all of them can be identified, which can make their users more identifiable. Third, we explored the use of browser fingerprinting for crawler detection. We measured its use in the wild, as well as the main detection techniques. Since fingerprints are collected on the client-side, we also evaluated its resilience against an adversarial crawler developer that tries to modify its crawler fingerprints to bypass security checks.

These results have been obtained in the context of the PhD thesis of Antoine Vastel [14] defended in October 2019.