Google Finds a Workaround for Apple’s Intelligent Tracking Prevention

Browser cookies

Google has found a workaround for Apple’s Intelligent Tracking Prevention (ITP), a feature set to launch later this year in Safari. According to SearchEngineLand, Google is deploying a change in its AdWords service that obeys Apple’s rules, while still allowing online advertisers to track conversion rates.

Browser cookies

Changes to AdWords and Apple’s ITP

ITP’s main purpose is to keep sites and advertisers from tracking you indefinitely. It imposes limits on how cookies behave in Safari, including what they can do and how long they last. Apple’s own guidelines recommend operators move the tracking they need to track ad performance to be server-side. Google has modified its service to meet those guidelines.

In a statement to SearchEngineLand, Google said”

We are updating our measurement tools, consistent with Apple’s recommendations for ad attribution, to help our customers continue to accurately measure ad clicks and conversions. These changes are designed to work for all browsers, but are timed to adapt to the new settings Apple is introducing. Our goal is to limit interruptions to our users’ experiences and to preserve our partners’ ability to evaluate their investments in digital advertising. As always, giving users choice and control of their data and how it’s used is a top priority for us.

What That Means

Theoretically what this means is that Apple’s users will be less trackable-forever, while advertisers can still measure performance. It also appears that Google is legitimately meeting Apple’s intent.

SearchEngineLand has more details.

3 thoughts on “Google Finds a Workaround for Apple’s Intelligent Tracking Prevention

  • Bryan:

    Only two things should be shocking about Google’s Apple AIT workaround:

    1) That anyone would be shocked that the Goog would implement a workaround, given that this goes to the heart of Google’s business model, you know, how they pay themselves, and;

    2) A pleasant surprise, that they are publicly acknowledging that they will implement this workaround, and playing by Apple’s stated rules, in doing so.

    Bottom line: We should have expected this, but not necessarily that Google would have acknowledged those expectations prior to implementing it.

    1. Well, they and other “free” websites such as the MacObserver, need to pay themselves somehow and ads are probably the best way. I just don’t like the idea of advertisers stalking me and the webpage slowing javascripts. Also just because I looked at shoes on a clothing website doesn’t mean that I am still wanting to see adds for them on a tableware website.

Leave a Reply

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.