Home » Washington Post Encrypts Parts of Its Web Site to Make it More Difficult to Track Reading Habits of Readers

Washington Post Encrypts Parts of Its Web Site to Make it More Difficult to Track Reading Habits of Readers

by | Jul 8, 2015

The Washington Post is encrypting parts of its Web site, “making it more difficult for hackers, government agencies and others to track the reading habits of people who visit the site,” stated The Post.

The added security will apply to The Post’s homepage as well as stories on the site’s national security page and the technology policy blog The Switch. The encryption will roll out to the rest of the site over the coming months, continued The Post’s report, which added that most browsers will note the added security with a display icon, a small lock, in the Web address bar. Secure sites also start with the letters “https” rather than “http.” (The S is for secure.)

The Post’s report, in part, also stated:

“Encrypted traffic is standard for many sites, including online banking and Web-based e-mail services, and is becoming increasingly common across the Internet. The Obama administration has made encrypting traffic a priority: Earlier this month, the White House ordered all public federal Web sites to start using https technology by the end of 2016.

“But the news media has lagged. Last year, the New York Times published a blog post challenging news organizations to begin automatically encrypting their sites’ traffic by the end of 2015. But the Times has yet to make the security feature automatic for its readers.

“Although some smaller online-only outlets, including the Intercept and TechDirt, use https technology by default, The Post is the first major general news organization to roll out the added security measures to all of its readers.”

(In a related item, The Washington Post’s Web site broke traffic records in June with unique visitors, page views and video starts all reaching new highs. According to The Post, there were a number of big stories with high readership throughout the month.)

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