Google is set to follow in the footsteps of Apple by blocking apps from tracking you on Android. Google said it will restrict the ability of advertisers to track users of Android phones and other devices.
In a blog post, Google’s VP of product management for Android Security & Privacy, Anthony Chaves, said that the company will also develop other ways for developers of software and businesses to reach mobile users while limiting the sharing of people’s private data. According to Chavez, the company wants to “raise the bar for user privacy.”
“Today, we’re announcing a multi-year initiative to build the Privacy Sandbox on Android, with the goal of introducing new, more private advertising solutions. Specifically, these solutions will limit sharing of user data with third parties and operate without cross-app identifiers, including advertising ID. We’re also exploring technologies that reduce the potential for covert data collection, including safer ways for apps to integrate with advertising SDKs,” Chavez said in the blog post.
Prior to today’s announcement, Google included a unique identifier on Android devices called Advertising ID. The Advertising ID allowed marketers to see what a user was doing across all apps. This allowed companies to build a comprehensive picture of the user’s interests and activities. Google’s latest move limits apps’ ability to capture that information.
Google said it plans to support current ad technology for another two years at the least.
In 2021, Italy’s competition and market authority fined Apple and Google [AGCM] for violating the country’s consumer code. Apple and Google were both fined over $11 million apiece by the regulators.
The two tech behemoths incurred the fine for not providing their users with clear enough information on commercial uses of their data. This, according to the regulatory body, violates Italy’s consumer code.
The AGCM also accuses the two American companies of deploying “aggressive” practices to push users to accept the commercial processing. Google and Apple both said they will appeal the fine.
The AGCM accused Google of omitting vital information during the account creation phase. The regulators said the search engine giant should be providing relevant information to consumers. According to the AGCM, this will help them decide whether to consent to its use of their data for commercial purposes.
Apple, on its part, is accused of failing to immediately provide users with clear information on how their information is being used commercially when they create an Apple ID or access its digital stores.