Disrupting Google’s homepage with a 14-charater string

Much of Google's resistance to adding a link to its privacy policy on its homepage seems to boil down to little more than aesthetics. As Steve Langdon, a Google spokesman, puts it: "We do believe that having very limited text…

Comparing Search Engine Privacy Policy Visibility

Prompted by Google's resistance to cluttering its homepage with a link to its privacy policy, I decided to take a quick tour of the major search engines to compare the relative visibility of their privacy policies. AOL, Microsoft, and Yahoo!…

Google Wants You to Search for their Privacy Policy (and they get to record that query!)

I've long complained about how it takes at least 2 clicks to get to Google's privacy policy from its homepage (3 clicks if you count its new Privacy Center splash page). And that's only if you happen to click on…

More Details on Yahoo’s New Ad Sales System, AMP!

Yahoo has issued a press release on their new ad sales system, AMP! that provided a few new insights into this "powerful new online advertising platform." The New York Times broke this story earlier, which I blogged about here. Interestingly,…

Article 29 Working Party: Opinion on Data Protection Issues Related to Search Engines

The European Commission's Article 29 Data Protection Working Party has released their long-awaited "Opinion on Data Protection Issues Related to Search Engines" (PDF), something I've debated here. At first glance, it seems we're in agreement that the Data Protection Directive…

Proposed NY Law to Limit the Web Tracking also Requires Access to Data Collected

On the heels of growing public awareness of how "large Web companies are learning more about people than ever from what they search for and do on the Internet, gathering clues about the tastes and preferences of a typical user…

The Challenges of the Values Advocate

When Ask.com launched AskEraser, a new service which promises to protect user privacy by, upon request, deleting users’ search activity from Ask.com servers, I applauded the effort, but also pointed out some of its shortcomings. The privacy advocacy group EPIC,…

AskEraser Launched, but Incomplete Protection

As previously discussed, Ask.com has launched AskEraser, a new service which promises to protect user privacy by, upon request, deleting users' search activity from Ask.com servers. Ask has put together quite an extensive help page explaining the details of AskEraser,…