How Google Plans to Track You Now. Google Privacy Sandbox – an initiative that claims that it simultaneously protects users’ online privacy while it is also offering businesses that hold information with the information required for targeted advertising, is receiving a new feature that is expected to improve the latter without having to put a stop to the former.
It is called the Topics, and as stated by Google, its means that you get to keep track of your potential interests without actively having to track your activity.
How Google Plans to Track You Now
The topics get to work using a web browser in other to look through your history and deduce a handful of “themes” (or topics) in other to use as your interests for the weeks.
Google states that these details would remain only on the device itself, and would not be shared with external servers or even third parties. Instead, websites that took part in Topics would be offered just those predetermined topics in other to make use of and share with advertising partners in other to create targeted ads.
As stated by Google’s description, the topics chosen by Topics would cycle as time goes on, with each one having an expiring date of After three weeks. And being replaced with a much better topic determined by your browser. Also, it states that the topics would be curating your topics in order for you to exclude potentially sensitive subjects.
As pointed out by Google, a website is required to opt-in via topics and there’s nothing stopping the said site from having to stick with other targeted ad generation methods like cookies and browser tracking.
What This Means for Users
If you get to visit a website to book a hotel, it might actually create a “Travel & Transportation” topic. Taking a look at the exercise equipment in an online shop, it gets to add “Fitness.” Then when you get to visit a site that makes use of topics, your browser will pick three of your predetermined topics to send over.
Those three topics would further be used by the site and its advertising partners in other to generate targeted ads, just like what you are already used to seeing probably. Though in this situation, who you ate, your location and your browsing history will not get added to this information.
While your personal details remain to be kept under wraps, Google admits that it companies might actually be able to connect with the topics provided together in other to try and determine potentially sensitive information. By the examples given by Google, this means that a company could actually attempt to figure out race, gender identity, etc., even though that information is yet to be offered through topics.
Also, you get to view topics that have been determined for you, and if you do not require any specific ones for you to get associated with, you can block them. Similarly, you would be required to opt-out of Google’s Privacy Sandbox initiative entirely inside the settings of your chrome.
Google to Launch Topic
Still, no public launch of topics would be made for some time since as stated by Google, technology is still in its early stages, but it does intend to launch a developer trail right on chrome “soon.”