Privacy Sandbox In Google Chrome (Easy Explanation)

We have always known Google as a brand that wants to take the initiative of tech revolutions. And being a tech giant, that’s what they have always done. And the recent introduction of Google Chrome’s Privacy Sandbox has created a buzz around the tech world. Everyone’s curious and not many people have been able to explain in it layman terms. 

So, in this article, I am going to explain what it exactly is, how it works, and why it was needed. So, stick till the end to find out whether it’s a boon or bane to the users and whether you should be disabling it. So, let’s dive straight into the topic. 

What Exactly Is Google’s Privacy Sandbox?

Google claims it wants to completely eliminate cookies, making the browsing experience more secure. But surely that won’t be good news for the advertisers. So, instead, Google came with another plan to replace the cookies with something called Privacy Sandbox. And like its name, it is more focused on protecting users’ privacy. 

Google is trying to shake the whole advertising industry but also making arrangements for them. Privacy Sandbox is based on the FLoC (Federated Learning of Cohorts). It has been built in such a way that it can provide the advertisers with the data they need to show targetted ads, but also keep the users’ data more secure. 

This can be revolutionizing since advertisers have relied on cookies for a really long time and users don’t feel secure about it. But needless to say, Google is also an advertising agency after everything else. But surely privacy wasn’t the only issue for which cookies are being replaced. Let’s check out the others. 

Why Did Google Have To Introduce Privacy Sandbox?

The following are the main reasons behind the introduction of Google’s Privacy Sandbox.

User’s privacy concerns: Many users seem reluctant to use cookies. Let’s be honest, cookies have a bad reputation among the users for stealing browsing data. People want to keep their privacy and anonymity in their online activities.

Malicious third-party cookies: Cookies can help hackers and crackers to do unethical and malicious activities and target the users. If cookies are not handled correctly, they can reveal the personal information of the users. 

Cookies blocking by browsers: Many browsers now can block the cookies just so their users can feel safer.

Many browsers have joined hands and Mozilla Firefox is probably the pioneer of it, trying to increase its market share. 

Google saw these problems coming long before. And that’s why revamping the whole cookies and tracking data thing makes sense. The new alternative to cookies will satisfy everyone, be it users or advertisers. And since Google is doing it, it won’t be long before other browsers will also start to adapt to the changes. 

So, if I had to summarise everything, Google’s Privacy Sandbox’s main purpose is to improve the privacy of the users without hampering the advertisers in getting the data for targeted ads. 

Why Is It Important For The Users?

Privacy Sandbox can solve the problems of privacy concerns of the users without damaging the advertiser’s market. It will also improve transparency and only collect useful data from the users. Individual information can remain protected. This can be a huge game-changer in browser’s and advertiser’s markets. 

How Does Privacy Sandbox Work?

Google is planning to completely replace the cookies and, the new Privacy Sandbox is a projected model of it. It is going to work by blocking all the individual data from going to the advertisers. Now, each user’s data will be kept inside their own Chrome browser itself. And things like common interests can be tracked via browsing history, and all the users with similar interests will be grouped together.

The Chrome browser will be known which user’s data is to which group and the API (Application Programming Interface) will show the advertisers all the grouped users for targeted ads. So, all in all, APIs will basically replace all the cookies and will keep track upon attribution.

Should You Disable Privacy Sandbox?

It is more secure than cookies without a doubt. But still, it’s in the beta phase. It is enabled by default for all Chrome users. I would recommend disabling it if you’re concerned about anonymity, I would recommend disabling it. And since most users are not sure the working and would like to wait and see how it goes, disabling it makes sense. 

How To Disable Privacy Sandbox?

Disabling it is quite simple. Here are the steps you need to follow.

Privacy sandbox in Chrome windows
  1. Launch Google Chrome
  2. Click on the menu option (three dots) and go to Settings.
  3. Now go to Privacy and security > Privacy Sandbox.
  4. On this page, turn off the toggle button beside Privacy Sandbox trials.

Note: Some people also see the FLoC option enabled. This option is not shown in all of the users’ Chrome since they are still testing it. But disabling the Privacy Sandbox will also automatically disable the FLoC as well. 

FAQs

Is Google Privacy Sandbox safe?

It is safe and a much better alternative to cookies that steal your browsing data. 

Is Privacy sandbox available on Edge?

Right now it’s only available on Google Chrome and will soon be integrated with other Chromium-based browsers. It is not on Edge. 

Conclusion

With privacy concerns becoming important more than ever, Google had to make some changes for its users base. Privacy Sandbox provides the perfect middle ground for all people. And, we must say, it is here to stay. 

A cookieless future is inevitable and Google is going up on the right path. If you loved the article make sure to share it with your friends and family so they would also be able to learn about Privacy Sandbox. And if you have any doubts, you can comment down. 

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Satish Shah
Member of Team TECHCountless: Tech Enthusiast, and Programmer
Articles: 129

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