Google is planning to change the third-party tracking of cookies in its Chrome web browser, given the growing concern of privacy among users. The company also wants to block third-party cookies and add them to the list of Safari and Firefox.
Google has said that it will not replace third-party cookies with any other features that affect the activity and privacy of users equally.
What are cookies?
HTTP cookies, also known as web cookies or Internet cookies, are small data pieces that are stored by the browser on a user’s computer as they browse websites. Cookies record the user’s previous browsing activity. These are of different types.
Authentication cookies which are very important. It takes care of the accounts with which users login, so that the website can know whether sensitive information can be shared or not.
The second is tracking cookies, which maintain long-term records of the user’s browsing history.
First-party cookies are maintained by domains that have been opened by the user.
At the same time, third-party cookies are kept from domains different from the ones opened by the user. They are usually placed in computers when a domain opened by users hosts content from external domains such as advertisements.
What’s wrong with these cookies?
Third-party cookies allow an advertiser to create a browsing history of users with the help of cookies. This causes trouble for users, as private advertisers are able to track users’ activity on the websites where they have placed their advertisements. This allows the advertiser to give targeted advertisements to the users according to them.
Browsers such as Safari and Firefox have blocked third-party cookies by default, with Chrome now allowing users to block third-party as well as first-party cookies and have it fully rollout by 2022 Planning to do.
Google’s decision to block third-party cookies last year raised the possibility that users’ awareness of privacy has increased. Meanwhile, Safari and Firefox became popular as they stand firmly against cross-site tracking.
Google brought this change late because its revenue is generated from the advertising business on a large scale. Blocking third-party cookies would turn Google against advertisers. Therefore, Google was looking for ways to reduce users’ tracking without harming their revenue. However, it now appears that Google has not found any other option than to block these cookies.