UK investigates Google's Privacy Sandbox

Apparently, the goal of the new Google Chrome browser privacy plan is to replace third-party cookies with another system that provides less information to advertisers. Although this could have a great impact on the digital advertising market, for Google this is inevitable and they add: "digital advertising practices have to evolve," he said BBC News.

Cookies? As mentioned by his Privacy Policy, these are: "small files containing a character string that is sent to the computer when you visit a website. When you visit the site again, the cookie allows this site to recognize the browser. Cookies can store user preferences and other information".

On the other hand, there are differences between cookies in terms of the domain to which they belong:

These "third party cookies" are the ones that allow a person's web activity to be tracked as he enters and leaves different web sites and thus attributes a pattern that allows him to offer advertising according to his interests, that is, targeted advertising.

Taking into account the current scenario, Google's privacy plan aims to keep the “first party cookies” “working” and eliminate the scheme for third-party cookies: the plan is called the “Google Privacy Sandbox”. In this sense, what they seek is to replace them with other tools that provide more limited anonymous information: such as the number of users who visited a product page after seeing the relevant ad, among others. But the key is that they will not have access to the user information behind such preferences.

What did the players in the digital advertising market say? "Google will effectively control how websites can monetize and operate their business (…) this means that any business that buys or sells advertising will depend on Google for part of the process, whether they like it or not”. They are clearly not happy with the changes.

At first glance, Google's new privacy plan appears to be beneficial to users, but the UK Markets and Competition Authority noted: “While there are consumer benefits to the types of privacy measures Google was proposing, they could be outweighed by other concernsAnd they added that many news sites would become "unsustainable."

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Marilú Lazo
Lawyer from the Pontificia Universidad Católica del Perú (PUCP). Director of The Crypto Legal Blog, she has experience in corporate advice, consumer protection, as well as in matters of personal data protection and new technologies.

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