Despite phasing out cookies for ads, Google won’t track you into new ways

Despite phasing out cookies for ads, Google won't track you into new ways

March 3, 2021: On Wednesday, Google said in a blog post that it has plans for targeted advertising as it phases out the use of browser cookies that it won’t use other ways to “track” users around the internet after it stops supporting cookies in Chrome.

Google says it will only use “privacy-preserving technologies” that rely on methods like anonymization or aggregation of data. 

David Temkin’s blog post, director of product management for ads privacy and trust, says the company has been getting questions regarding joining of Google with others in the ad tech industry who plan to replace third-party cookies with alternative user-level identifiers.”

“Today, we’re making explicit that once third-party cookies are phased out, we will not build alternate identifiers to track individuals as they browse across the web,” the Google post says.

Cookies are small pieces of code that websites deliver to a visitor’s browser and stick around as they visit other sites. They can track users across multiple locations, target ads, and see how they perform.

Google says this is about how its ad products will work and not restricting what can happen on Chrome by third parties. The company said it wouldn’t use Unified ID 2.0 or LiveRamp ATS in its ad products but wouldn’t speak specifically about any one initiative.

Google had briefed several significant advertisers and groups on the post before Wednesday, including George Popstefanov, founder and CEO of digital agency PMG.

He added that he believes Google is motivated to design its products and solutions to solve the new reality.

“Marketers are already diversifying their spending in more areas up and down the funnel, so it will be incumbent on Google for its solutions to appeal to brands and to support marketers’ investments and impact,” he said.

Alec Stapp, director of technology policy at the Progressive Policy Institute, called Google’s news a step in the right direction for user privacy. The group receives the fund from Google and other major tech players, Protocol reported.

Jon Halvorson, Global VP of consumer experience at Mondelez International, said the decision is consistent with consumers’ feedback about what they want and expect. He said the company would be doing some testing in “FLoC” and building it into business plans this year. 

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