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Google to allow Android users to opt out of interest based ads

After Apple, Google is now restricting apps to track users for personalised ads. 

Android apps will now find it tough to track users as Google will remove advertising ID, for users who have opted out of receiving personalised ads.

Google already allows Android users to opt-out of personalized ads. But even if users do that, software developers may still access the user’s Advertising ID, a unique string of characters that identifies the user’s device. Firms can use this Advertising ID for purposes such as allowing developers to measure app usage or letting advertisers detect and prevent invalid traffic. 

Following the change, if a user has opted out of personalized ads, the Advertising ID will not be available — requests for it will return only a string of zeros. 

The company said in a policy update that its rollout will affect apps running on Android 12 devices starting in late 2021 and will expand to apps running on devices that support Google Play in early 2022. It said it will “provide an alternate solution to support essential use cases such as analytics and fraud prevention” in July. 

With regulators taking a closer look at user privacy, and consumers becoming more concerned about the use of their personal data, tech giants are trying to get ahead by making changes in the name of privacy. Google said in early 2020 that it would end support for third-party cookies on its Chrome browser within two years.

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