Alleged Chrome Tracking: Google Faces Complaint from Austrian Advocacy Group

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Alphabet’s Google faced a complaint from Austrian advocacy group NOYB on Thursday for allegedly tracking users of its Chrome Web browser, an issue already on the radar of EU antitrust regulators.

The U.S. tech giant is phasing out third-party cookies, which advertisers use to track consumers, to protect consumer privacy. Instead, it has introduced a set of tools called the Privacy Sandbox to block covert tracking techniques and limit data sharing with third parties while allowing developers and publishers to measure ads without tracking individual users.

Chrome users are prompted to decide whether they want to enable the ad privacy feature to prevent tracking. NOYB claims the feature allows Google to track users within the browser and argues that the company should seek users’ consent as required under European Union privacy rules.

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“People thought they were agreeing to a privacy feature but were tricked into accepting Google’s first-party ad tracking. Consent has to be informed, transparent, and fair to be legal. Google has done the exact opposite,” said NOYB founder Max Schrems in a statement.

On Thursday, the group filed a complaint with the Austrian data protection authority.

NOYB has filed numerous complaints with EU and national privacy watchdogs against big tech companies for alleged privacy infringements.

Source Reuters

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