Subscribe to Entrepreneur for $5

Bug Control

What you need to know if you use Web bugs

This story appears in the May 2001 issue of Entrepreneur. Subscribe »

Web bugs. You can't see them, but they exist on many Webpages across the Net. The nonprofit Privacy Foundation givesthis definition: A Web bug is "a graphic on a Web page or inan e-mail message that is designed to monitor who is reading theWeb page or e-mail message. A Web bug is often invisible because[it is] typically only 1-by-1 pixel in size, with nocolor."

For Web site operators, Web bugs represent a subtle way togather data on visitors, such as the number of page visits, browserusage, effectiveness of mass e-mails and even personal information.Privacy advocates are particularly concerned about the ability ofWeb bugs to communicate with cookies and potentially link recordsof online behavior to personal profiles.

Continue reading this article - and everything on Entrepreneur!

Become a member to get unlimited access and support the voices you want to hear more from. Get full access to Entrepreneur for just $5.

Entrepreneur Editors' Picks