Google’s FLoC will replace third party cookies
There is big news for Chrome browser users. Google has announced in a blog post that it will Phase Out Third-party Cookies and won’t track web browsing activity for Personalised Advertisements once FLoC replaces cookies.
Google has already announced that it will remove third-party cookies that have allowed online advertising for decades to meet the data privacy requirements in Europe and the United States.
“72% of people believe that their actions online are tracked by advertisers, technology firms or other companies, and 81% of users believe that the potential risks they face due to the data collection, outweigh the benefits of such an approach,” – says Google in the blog post.
Google will no longer support third-party cookies but will continue to work with advertisers using the FLoC (Federated Learning of Cohorts) feature.
It will analyze the behaviour of a person on the web, but only to attribute it to a specific audience and the user’s personal data will not be disclosed.
Google had explained that “This approach effectively hides individuals ‘in the crowd’ and uses on-device processing to keep a person’s Web history private on the browser”.
Google Director of Product Management David Timkin said that once third-party cookies are phased out, we will not build alternate identifiers to track individuals as they browse across the web, nor will we use them in our products.
Public testing of the FLoC system will begin at the end of this month, and its integration with the Google Ads service will start in the second quarter of 2021.
One of the main innovations of the upcoming update is the FLoC system. It has already proven itself a couple of months ago when Google tested it inside the browser sandbox.
This function will now work normally. True, it will be implemented for several years.
Why is it important? Let’s first remember how cookies work. These are the code snippets that track your browsing history.
Thanks to them, you see ads for shoes that you googled two weeks ago. But the main problem is that “cookies” are collected from all sites and then sold to shadow data brokers. Therefore, “cookies”, to put it mildly, are extremely unpleasant from the point of view of the security of personal data.
What is FloC and how it works?
Under FloC, Google will not collect data from every user, but from a group. A special algorithm figures out which cohort to include you in, and then decides what to show in the banners.
The machine makes a decision based on your browsing history, but unlike cookies, this data does not leave the browser. As a result, the advertiser will not have to use your personal information, but the information of the group where you will be assigned.
This approach increases the effectiveness of advertising and preserves the privacy of users. If all goes well, FLoC will replace standard cookies and that will start the beginning of a new era of digital marketing.