Google is reportedly going to roll out new privacy tools that'll provide more ways to control cookies and other identifying data.
With these in place, users will have the ability to limit trackers and the like.
Citing "people familiar with the matter," The Wall Street Journal reports that the Alphabet-owned company will add a new "dashboard-like function" to Chrome. There, users will have access to more details regarding cookies tracking them and options to limit them.
For the uninitiated, cookies are small pieces of data from websites that are stored in a web browser. Typically, web pages use them to remember certain information about a user, and advertisers also use them for targeting purposes.
Chrome has more than a billion users, and considering that they could soon be able to restrict tracking cookies, advertisers on the platform are likely to take a hit. The same doesn't apply to Google itself, though. The new feature isn't expected to have a significant impact on the company's own cookies, scripts, and such. As a result, it would have a considerable advantage over its advertising rivals.
It's unclear when these tools will be implemented, but according to the report, they could go live "as soon as this week."
6 Years Of Planning
The report says that Google has been planning and discussing the feature for at least six years already. The company then ramped up its efforts in the wake of the Facebook and Cambridge Analytica scandal in which the information of at least 87 million users was "improperly shared."
Controls over tracking such as these aren't new. Back in 2017, Apple launched a blocker for ad trackers for its Safari web browser, which, unsurprisingly, didn't sit well with advertisers. In 2018, Mozilla also updated Firefox to block ad trackers by default to not only keep user data safe online but to improve load times of pages as well.