Search giant Google has shelved third-party cookies for personalized ad display and switches to the FLoC system, which works with the logic of grouping like-minded users.

Google plans to switch to a new method of collecting data about users by shelving the use of third-party cookies for targeted advertising. The system in question has begun to be tested with a limited number of users.

Until now, third-party cookies were used to display advertisements for users’ interests. However, the fact that browsers started to block third-party cookies by default and users could easily disable these cookies with extensions pushed the company to different searches.

Google is developing a new method of serving ads called Federated Learning of Cohorts (FLoC) based on grouping users with similar interests. The search giant argues that this method will increase the online privacy of internet users.

How will the FLoC system work?
The new system will work with the logic of grouping like-minded users according to their browsing history. That is, by doing what third-party cookies do directly through the browser itself. Users will be assigned a “cohort number” according to the group they belong to.

By accessing this number, ad publishers will be able to display personalized ads to users based on their interests. Google thinks this is a better alternative, plus it would in theory eliminate personally identifiable information.

The FLoC system is currently being tested on users in Australia, Brazil, Canada, India, Indonesia, Japan, Mexico, New Zealand, the Philippines, and the United States. It is enabled for 0.5% of Chrome users in the regions listed above. It will soon expand globally.


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