Google Introduces ‘Privacy Sandbox’ for ​​Ads on Android


Google this week announced Privacy Sandbox on Android, a new initiative expected to lead to more private advertising solutions for its mobile users.

The new solutions, the Internet giant claims, will limit the sharing of user data and will also prevent the use of cross-app identifiers, advertising IDs included.

“We’re also exploring technologies that reduce the potential for covert data collection, including safer ways for apps to integrate with advertising SDKs,” Google says.

Advertising IDs were introduced to provide users with more control over how their data is shared between parties, while ensuring that the ecosystem is dominated by free applications, thus accessible to all types of users.

The new Privacy Sandbox on Android builds on Google’s previous efforts to provide users with increased control over their advertising data, by offering improved privacy and maintaining access to free content and services, the Internet giant says.

[READ: Google Details New Privacy and Security Policies for Android Apps]

Google hopes that this approach of providing a privacy-preserving alternative path will prove more effective compared to other platforms’ decisions to bluntly restrict certain technologies.

“Our goal with the Privacy Sandbox on Android is to develop effective and privacy enhancing advertising solutions, where users know their information is protected, and developers and businesses have the tools to succeed on mobile,” the company says.

Existing ads platform features, Google says, will continue to receive support for at least two years, and any upcoming change will be announced well ahead.

Developers can now review the proposed solution and provide feedback on the Android developer portal. Developer previews and a beta release are expected by the end of the year.

“We know this initiative needs input from across the industry in order to succeed. We’ve already heard from many partners about their interest in working together to improve ads privacy on Android, and invite more organizations to participate,” Google notes.

Related: Google Removes 600 Android Apps for Displaying Disruptive Ads

Related: Google Faces UK Scrutiny Over New Advertising Data Revamp

Related: Google Updates Policies to Reject Ads for Spyware

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Ionut Arghire is an international correspondent for SecurityWeek.

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