Google announces privacy sandbox to limit data sharing for ads on Android

Search engine giant Google has announced a multi-year initiative to build a privacy sandbox on Android, with the goal of introducing more private advertising solutions. 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. The Privacy Sandbox on Android builds on our existing efforts on the web, providing a clear path forward to improve user privacy without putting access to free content and services at risk,” the company said.

Developers can review Google’s initial design proposals for the solution and share feedback on the Android developer site. The company plans to release developer previews over the course of the year, with a beta release by the end of the year.

“We’re also committed to working closely with regulators. We’ve offered public commitments for our Privacy Sandbox efforts on the web, including ensuring that we don’t give preferential treatment to Google’s ads products or sites,” the company said.

In what seemed like a jibe at Apple’s controversial privacy policy that has led to industry-wide depletion of advertising revenues, the big tech firm said, “We realise that other platforms have taken a different approach to ads privacy, bluntly restricting existing technologies used by developers and advertisers.”

“We believe that — without first providing a privacy-preserving alternative path — such approaches can be ineffective and lead to worse outcomes for user privacy and developer businesses,” it added.

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