FTC wades into Google Chrome

The US Federal Trade Commission Chairman Jon Liebowitz waded into the search engine outfit Google for not adopting the “Do Not Track” privacy feature in its Chrome browser.

Liebowitz said that moves to shove “Do Not Track” privacy under the bonnet of browsers had gained momentum with even Apple signing on for the technology.

He said that Google had not evolved as much as he would like on the subject, despite having the technology and having the backing of the FTC and privacy groups.

To be fair to Google, Chrome is not the only one which does not have a do not track function. Opera does not have plans to bring in Do Not Track anytime soon either.

Opera spokesman Thomas Ford told Computerworld that while such features could lead to better privacy they but contribute to a false sense of security.

He pointed out that there are complications that arise when websites do not honour the Do Not Track feature.

Google said it has its own ideas about privacy, and also won’t commit to Do Not Track. It continues to offer the Keep My Opt-Outs plug-in for Chrome which works to permanently opt users out of most ad profiling.

The Keep My Opt-Outs plug-in blocks targeted ads produced by about 60 companies and ad networks that hew to self-regulation efforts by the online advertising industry. It only works for Chrome.

However Mozilla claims that the plug-in is deceptive because although it offers an opt-out of tracking ads, it still collects the data.