Chrome to finally add Do Not Track privacy setting

While many major web browsers have allowed its users to put in a Do Not Track privacy setting for sometime, Google has been slower to put in support for this option in the Chrome browser. Today, that finally changed as a early developer version of Chrome finally added Do Not Track as an option.

The early version is available to download from the Chromum website and represents Google's move to adhere to a previous agreement with the US government to add Do Not Track to Chrome. AllThingsD.com reports that according to a statement from Google, "We undertook to honor an agreement on DNT that the industry reached with the White House early this year. To that end we’re making this setting visible in our Chromium developer channel, so that it will be available in upcoming versions of Chrome by year’s end."

As we have reported in the past, Microsoft has decided to make Do Not Track as the default option for Internet Explorer 10 that will be released with Windows 8. This decision has made some people upset, mainly Internet advertisers who claim that move by Microsoft will "undercut thriving business models, and reduce the availability and diversity of the Internet products."

Source: AllThingsD.com | Image via Google

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21 Comments

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Just enabled in Chromium. I always turn on DNT on all browsers (that have the option)... even all the computers at work.

hagjohn said,
Just enabled in Chromium. I always turn on DNT on all browsers (that have the option)... even all the computers at work.
Seems like an awful waste of time.

Ignorant security is not security. I hope you're not on their IT payroll or they're in some seriously deep s**t.

KCRic said,
Seems like an awful waste of time.

Ignorant security is not security. I hope you're not on their IT payroll or they're in some seriously deep s**t.

Yeah, like that's the only thing I do. What a stupid thing to say. I understand it's worthless now but it's set, so when it finally does work, I don't have to run around like you will.

Google Chrome guys are going to add this feature, while Google Ad guys are going to work on how to bypass this feature.

FMH said,
Google Chrome guys are going to add this feature, while Google Ad guys are going to work on how to bypass this feature.

Why would you work on bypassing something you don't have any actual reason to comply with?
Is any ad network even bothering with DNT at all?

Isn't this kinda pointless considering that Apache(webserver) recently updated their code to ignore IE9+ do not track setting? What will stop Apache from ignoring Chrome's Do Not Track settings?

Yoofie said,
Isn't this kinda pointless considering that Apache(webserver) recently updated their code to ignore IE9+ do not track setting? What will stop Apache from ignoring Chrome's Do Not Track settings?

The reason Apache may be ignoring the IE10 do not track setting is because it's on by default. I don't think Chrome's will be on by default so Apache shouldn't have a reason to ignore it.

Mieky242 said,

The reason Apache may be ignoring the IE10 do not track setting is because it's on by default. I don't think Chrome's will be on by default so Apache shouldn't have a reason to ignore it.

No, it is not. During Win8 install it asks you if you want to use DNT. The only difference is that Win8 asks you, in Firefox (and I assume will be in Chrome) you need to know it exists and hunt for it in some list of settings. Yes, in Win8 setup the toggle switch is set to DNT, but the user is explicitly asked.

But we know, this is Microsoft (excuse me, M$) so if they were not helping you keep your privacy then they are wrong, and if they do help you keep your privacy, then they are wrong, and if they ignore it, then they are not following the Internet standards, so they are wrong.

nohone said,
No, it is not. During Win8 install it asks you if you want to use DNT. The only difference is that Win8 asks you, in Firefox (and I assume will be in Chrome) you need to know it exists and hunt for it in some list of settings. Yes, in Win8 setup the toggle switch is set to DNT, but the user is explicitly asked.

You are asked if you do a custom install, on express setup it defaults to DNT enabled. Therefore the default setting (unless you change it manually through the custom install options) is effectively "DNT on".

nohone said,

No, it is not. During Win8 install it asks you if you want to use DNT. The only difference is that Win8 asks you, in Firefox (and I assume will be in Chrome) you need to know it exists and hunt for it in some list of settings. Yes, in Win8 setup the toggle switch is set to DNT, but the user is explicitly asked.

But we know, this is Microsoft (excuse me, M$) so if they were not helping you keep your privacy then they are wrong, and if they do help you keep your privacy, then they are wrong, and if they ignore it, then they are not following the Internet standards, so they are wrong.

It doesn't matter, it's Microsoft, whatever they do it's always wrong. They released updates to keep my computer safe, how could you ask me to restart my computer microsoft?!

ichi said,

You are asked if you do a custom install, on express setup it defaults to DNT enabled. Therefore the default setting (unless you change it manually through the custom install options) is effectively "DNT on".

Express also gives you a summarized list of what is enabled/disabled - yeah you're not asked, you're TOLD about it. It is a series issue on Apache's end to ignore a user setting (and in reference to a comment above, I doubt they will ignore only IE's setting since that's browser harassment)

Either way, enabled or not, available or not, this ain't legally binding so AD companies will simply ignore the setting and continue doing their tracking while the user thinks "hey I'm safe".

georgevella said,
Express also gives you a summarized list of what is enabled/disabled - yeah you're not asked, you're TOLD about it. It is a series issue on Apache's end to ignore a user setting (and in reference to a comment above, I doubt they will ignore only IE's setting since that's browser harassment)

Yes, your are told, but due to a compromise in the DNT standard to please ad companies it can't be a default option, you must go out of your way to manually activate it or else ad networks have free way to just ignore that setting (and going by the current DNT specification they could do that even if the standard came to be legally binding).

While it's wrong for a web server to change user settings, that's the reason why they are doing that with IE10.

georgevella said,

Either way, enabled or not, available or not, this ain't legally binding so AD companies will simply ignore the setting and continue doing their tracking while the user thinks "hey I'm safe".

Exactly, it's useless.

georgevella said,
Express also gives you a summarized list of what is enabled/disabled - yeah you're not asked, you're TOLD about it. It is a series issue on Apache's end to ignore a user setting (and in reference to a comment above, I doubt they will ignore only IE's setting since that's browser harassment)

But that's the issue for Apache and all the ad companies. The do not track option is supposed to be an opt-in, users are supposed to manually set it, not get asked about if they want it to stay on or be told that it's on. That's how was set up as stupid as it may be, obviously the system should take people in to account more than ad companies and the default should be not to track and it should be respected. Being tracked, or, to make it sound less bad, ad personalization should be opt-in.

It's rather telling that Google had to be forced to do this by the rest of the industry and government, when usually they're the ones on the cutting edge. Not unexpected, just telling.

billyea said,
It's rather telling that Google had to be forced to do this by the rest of the industry and government, when usually they're the ones on the cutting edge. Not unexpected, just telling.

Can't blame them, tacking people IS their business. Everything else is a spin off of that..

Ryoken said,

Can't blame them, tacking people IS their business. Everything else is a spin off of that..

Nothing to stop Google from ignoring the Do Not Track HTTP header entry, regardless of it being a feature in their browser or not.

virtorio said,

Nothing to stop Google from ignoring the Do Not Track HTTP header entry, regardless of it being a feature in their browser or not.

Same as every other ad company, unfortunately.

billyea said,
It's rather telling that Google had to be forced to do this by the rest of the industry and government, when usually they're the ones on the cutting edge. Not unexpected, just telling.
Telling? What does this action 'tell' you? That they finally are implementing something pointless that was mandated by an uneducated, asinine, ignorant government?

There's no law forcing anyone to comply with DNT headers. Microsoft implemented it, made a big deal out of it, then made their servers ignore DNT requests.

But this is telling for Google to you?....