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Google to phase out tracking cookies within two years

Google to phase out tracking cookies within two years

Google on Tuesday announced it would begin phasing third-party cookies out of its Chrome web browser, following in the steps of competitors Safari and Firefox.

However, unlike those two companies that banned cookies outright, Google will phase out their support for cookies "within two years," Justin Schuh, director at engineering for Chrome, wrote in a blog post.

"Some browsers have reacted to these concerns by blocking third-party cookies, but we believe this has unintended consequences that can negatively impact both users and the web ecosystem," he continued.

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Google cited user concerns about cookies including privacy and data collection, pledging to replace them with new technical solutions.

Cookies allow companies to track patterns of specific users and are often used for targeted advertising. 

In Tuesday's blog post, Google argued that banning them immediately would encourage other bad behavior in its place, like fingerprinting, a cookie-less method used to identify web users.

During the two year period until it drops services for third party cookies altogether, Google will use some new methods to block cross-website tracking.

Chrome will require that cookies designated for third party use can only be accessed using secure connections starting in February.