Google Chrome could soon introduce a way for users to block tracking cookies by implementing a new tracking blocker, although it is reportedly one that will not affect Google’s own tracking scripts and cookies intact.
This news comes from a report from The Wall Street Journal. The paper reports that Google is looking to roll out a dashboard in a future edition of the Chrome browser that will give users the power to block cookies without the addition of a third-party solution.
At the moment, users seeking to freeze out tracking clients can currently install anti-tracking extensions using Google Chrome’s support for extensions. Some of the more popular options are Privacy Badger and Ghostery. If Google brings this support to Chrome natively, it’s unclear how they would fare.
Supposedly, this is a feature several years in the making at Google, with work accelerating after the recent Cambridge Analytica drama over at Facebook. However, if Google Chrome’s cookie blocker doesn’t hinder Google’s advertising efforts, it seems like they’ll have a leg-up on the competition when it comes to advertising. If it’s using its dominant position in the browser market to give itself a hand in the advertising department, it could well come under scrutiny, as the company has previously incurred several fines for antitrust.
Privacy has been a big push in tech recently, as both Facebook and Google have come out to talk about their renewed enthusiasm for privacy.. Android Q, which will also be detailed tonight, is pushing hard on protecting users privacy with new features. It’s been a key angle for both companies, who have previously made their money out of monetising your private data, however the Cambridge Analytica scandal seems to have changed a lot of people’s minds on issues of privacy, something that seems to have filtered up to executives at these companies.
We’ll find out more at Google I/O, which kicks off tonight.