Google And Mozilla Announce New "Do Not Track Me" Features

Google and Mozilla have posted that they’re adding new features to their browsers that will let users opt out of being tracked by third-party advertisers. The move comes a few weeks after the FTC issued a report recommending browser software developers to implement such a mechanism.

The two companies have differing proposals that are also different from the current system of cookies and blacklists. Mozilla posited a HTTP header in the browser that tells companies not to collect the user’s data. However, this means those companies have to agree to work with that standard.

Google proposed a Chrome plug-in that would let users permanently opt-out of getting tracked by online advertisers by connecting with the already existing opt-out industry self-regulating programs.

Since tracking and mining your data is how some agencies make their money, it could disrupt some companies’ business models, which in turn could make things harder for some publishers and content providers.

Regarding Google’s announcement, an FTC spokesperson told the New York Times, “We’re pleased that Google is engaged in the process, but Mozilla and Microsoft are clearly steps ahead.”

Mozilla’s blog post about the issue was posted on Sun, Jan 23, and Google’s was on Mon, Jan 24.

More Choice and Control Over Online Tracking [First Person Cookie]
Keep your opt-outs [Google Public Policy Blog]
Google and Mozilla Announce New Privacy Features [mediadecorder.blogs.nytimes]