Web site operators who want to spy on their users can add a "ping" directly to hyperlinks in their pages; these "ping" URLs are invisibly, silently by the browser when the user clicks the associated link, allowing third parties to be notified about your clicking activities.
When "ping" was standardized as "hyperlink auditing," browser vendors made it possible (if difficult) to disable it (for example, Safari had a hidden preference for this: "defaults write com.apple.Safari com.apple.Safari.ContentPageGroupIdentifier.WebKit2HyperlinkAuditingEnabled -bool false").
But in their latest versions, most browsers are removing this option. It's been eliminated from Safari and Chrome (and their derivatives like Chromium, Opera and Edge).
The exception is Firefox (and Brave, which is a derivative of Chromium), where hyperlink auditing is turned off by default.
With privacy and online tracking being such a large problem and major concern for many users, you would think that browser developers would give you the option to disable anything that could affect your privacy.
Unfortunately, this seems to be going in the reverse direction when it comes to hyperlink auditing.
Major Browsers to Prevent Disabling of Click Tracking Privacy Risk [Lawrence Abrams/Bleeping Computer]