Apple introduced a new technology to intelligently block browser cookies in Safari, which brought criticism from a number of advertising organizations. Apple believes in privacy with every product it makes, and the advertising groups want to track everything we do so they can sell ads.
Apple responded to that criticism this afternoon by fully explaining what they are doing for the consumer and standing up for themselves.
“Apple believes that people have a right to privacy – Safari was the first browser to block third party cookies by default and Intelligent Tracking Prevention is a more advanced method for protecting user privacy,” Apple said in a statement provided to The Loop.
“Ad tracking technology has become so pervasive that it is possible for ad tracking companies to recreate the majority of a person’s web browsing history. This information is collected without permission and is used for ad re-targeting, which is how ads follow people around the Internet. The new Intelligent Tracking Prevention feature detects and eliminates cookies and other data used for this cross-site tracking, which means it helps keep a person’s browsing private. The feature does not block ads or interfere with legitimate tracking on the sites that people actually click on and visit. Cookies for sites that you interact with function as designed, and ads placed by web publishers will appear normally,” the company said.
Those last two sentences say a lot to me. If, as a user, I interact with an advertisement on the Internet, it will allow tracking for those sites—that’s fair. However, it won’t allow these ad groups to endlessly track everything I do on the Web and show me ads—that’s fair too.
What Apple is doing is good for consumers. We don’t need creepy ad groups tracking everything we do. If you do want that, there are Web browsers that aren’t so intelligent that will allow that to happen. You can also disable the Intelligent Tracking Prevention feature if you wish.
I’ll stick with Safari.