Google Takes First Step in Privacy Sandbox Project, Disabling Third-Party Cookies for 30 Million Chrome Users
In a significant move towards enhancing user privacy, Google has disabled third-party cookies for approximately one percent of Chrome users around the world. With Chrome dominating over half of the browser market share, this change affects nearly 30 million users.
Users who are part of this initial rollout will receive a notification when they launch their browser, informing them that they are among the first to experience Tracking Protection. This feature limits websites from using third-party cookies to track user activity during browsing sessions.
To accommodate websites that have not yet adapted to this change, Google has introduced a temporary solution. Users can now re-enable third-party cookies by simply clicking on the eye icon located on their browser bar.
This move is part of Google’s broader Privacy Sandbox initiative, which aims to deliver personalized ads to users while safeguarding their privacy, as an alternative to using cookies. Under this initiative, users will be assigned to interest groups based on their browsing activities, enabling advertisers to target them with relevant ads.
Unlike traditional cookies, this system will be less invasive as data processing will occur on the user’s device. Interests will be stored for a period of three weeks, ensuring users’ browsing habits remain confidential.
However, regulators have expressed concerns about Google’s growing power and the potential implications of this initiative. Despite the apprehensions, Google plans to continue rolling out Tracking Protection to more Chrome users over the next few months.
The ultimate goal of Google’s Privacy Sandbox project is to disable third-party cookies for all Chrome users by mid-2024. This step is expected to revolutionize the digital advertising landscape while prioritizing the security and privacy of users’ online experiences.
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