Last week, Google launched a new version of Chrome browser (Chrome 69). The new browser is packed with new features are designed to make it easy for you to browse the internet regardless of your location. One of the unique features is the sync that is set to connect the browser to other platforms owned by Google such as YouTube and Gmail. This means that whenever you log into your Gmail account, you are automatically logged into Google Chrome 69 browser.
Well, to some extent, this automatic link between the two is convenient to end users, but it has raised privacy concerns among users. They are of the idea that they could be unknowingly be sending browsing data to Google when using the browser. The “force login” has the potential of hindering most people from installing and using Chrome 69 as it predispose them to data theft and other related risks.
Cryptography expert Mathew Green and Johns Hopkins are also concerned about this feature and hope that Google will reconsider deleting it to protect users’ data from unauthorized third parties. According to Green, the new sync features gives Google the ability to collect users browsing histories without their full consent and understanding of how the data will be used.
“Concisely, Google has transformed the question of consenting data upload from something affirmative that I actually had to put effort into – entering my Google credentials and signing into Chrome – into something I can now do with a single accidental click. This is a dark pattern. Whether intentional or not, it has the effect of making it easy for people to activate sync without knowing it, or to think they’re already synching and thus there’s no additional cost to increasing Google’s access to their data,” Mathew Greens. Search engine land reports.
Responding to Mathew Greens comment, Google was adamant that it does not automatically get browsing data and so users can opt in to have that happen when using Google Chrome 69. According this statement, it means that the sync is different from the automatic sign-in. However, most users don’t fully understanding the meaning of the two and what exactly goes on behind the scene.
Why this Google Chrome 69 Feature Matters to US (Digital Marketers)
Google seems to be competing with Facebook to capture as much data about users as possible for purposes of attribution, remarketing and targeting. Needless to say, this kind of data is essential for personalization of ad targeting, but this improvement on Google Chrome 69 browser poses a number of risks to the users and the company.
At the time of writing, the company is receiving thousands of negative comments especially on social media and mainstream media. Google and other browsers need to put into considerations the impact of such features before adding them. What your take on this issue, feel free to share in the comment section. Also, visit Alpha SEO Plus to learn more about SEO, Digital Marketing, and other services that we offer.