Google just announced today on their blog that tomorrow they will be releasing a beta version of a browser they designed called ‘Chrome’. While I use and appreciate many of the tools that Google produces, I often question, like many, their usage of personal data for ad displays.
Currently Google analyzes that the content of the pages you look at to display ads that are related to the content of the page. Once Google had the tracking power of Google Toolbar and now the Chrome browser, Google has the ability to track viewing and purchasing history for individual web users instead of individual web pages. It is very similar to the power Amazon has to match you with products that people with similar purchase histories prefer, except during your entire web experience. While it proves somewhat convenient to have products displayed to me on a shopping marketplace, I don’t want to have this targeted bombardment of advertisements in the same way every time I use the internet.
I expect Google will release a statement saying that they will not use the technology for this purpose like several of their projects before, but this is just one more time when we are putting something of incredible strength and power into Google’s hands without any accountability for privacy.