Internet: Google insists on end of advertising cookies

The advertising industry on the Internet must irrevocably adapt to the end of tracking with the help of cookies.

Internet: Google insists on end of advertising cookies

The advertising industry on the Internet must irrevocably adapt to the end of tracking with the help of cookies. Google top manager Matt Brittin made this clear at the DMEXCO advertising trade fair in Cologne. "Transitioning to a world without third-party cookies means we need to rethink the technology that underpins much of the online advertising ecosystem," said Brittin, who oversees Google's Europe, Middle East and Africa business. You have to develop new solutions that focus on data protection.

Cookies are small files that a browser saves on the computer or smartphone. Because cookies often contain unique identifiers, they allow websites to recognize their visitors. So-called third-party cookies are not set by the visited website itself, but by embedded content from other sites. This allows advertising service providers to track users across different pages.

"Third-party cookies are a technology that is increasingly being misused," Brittin told the German Press Agency. Users find some of the advertisements intrusive and annoying and are increasingly using ad blockers. "An ad blocker is a crude tool that makes it difficult to fund content because everything is blocked."

Brittin rejected a complete ban on personalized advertising because it would endanger the existence of the free, advertising-funded web. "The Internet Advertising Bureau found in a study that the switch from personalized to non-personalized advertising could cost 39 billion euros a year."

Interest profiles as an alternative solution

Brittin referred to an alternative concept called "Topics" (topics), in which the browser itself creates an interest profile without passing on data to advertisers that could be used for specific identification. "We provide new technology that enables users to see relevant advertising without compromising their privacy or being tracked across websites."

At the same time, Brittin made it clear that there will be no further grace period for accepting third-party cookies. Google had already announced in early 2020 that it would phase out support for advertising cookies in its own Chrome browser. After protests from the advertising industry, this deadline was extended to the "second half of 2024". That date is set, he said.

At DMEXCO in Cologne, Google announced two more new tools to enable privacy-friendly advertising. The "Google Ads Privacy Hub" is designed to help advertisers understand new privacy-friendly advertising solutions. The second tool is aimed at users: "My Ads Center" is intended to give users more control over the ads they want to see on YouTube, Google Search and Discover. In this area you can choose which advertisements you want to see and which not.

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