Ask.com To Allow Users to Control Data Retention

In a bold, unilateral move, the web search engine Ask.com has announced it will soon be implementing a new product called AskEraser which promises to allow users to erase their search history: With AskEraser, people can ensure that their search…

SDP2007 Presentation: The Quest for the Perfect Search Engine

Today I gave an abbreviated presentation of my dissertation research at the OII Summer Doctoral Programme hosted by the Berkman Center. (PDF of slides) Along with a summary of the diss, my talk included a brief meta-discussion of both the…

Google’s Cookie to have 2 Year Expiration (Because it is of little value after that time)

Google announced today they are changing the expiration date of their cookie from 2038 (the latest possible date) to a rolling 2 year period. Once put into action, users who visit Google today, for example, will receive a cookie that…

More of Peter Fleischer Misleading on Google Data Retention

Google's Peter Fleischer is (again) trying to provide justifications for Google's retention of users' search activities. He (again) is misleading. I don't have a lot of free time right now for an in-depth response, (my analysis is here) which is…

With SmartAds, Yahoo Finally Joins Google…as a Threat to Privacy

In my dissertation I outline the quest for the “perfect search engine” – a search engine capable of indexing all available information and providing fast and relevant results. The perfect search engine will have to have “perfect reach” to deliver…

Google’s Peter Fleischer is Dangerously Misleading on Privacy and Personalized Search

I'm supposed to be on vacation this week, but felt compelled to blog about this... There has been increased attention lately about Google's data retention policies and the impact its drive towards personalization might have on user privacy. In response,…

Google Korea to Log National IDs for some searches

This has the potential to set a disturbing precedent. InfoWorld reports that Google Korea plans to introduce an age-verification system later this year that will restrict adult-themed searches to those 19 years of age and older. Working from a 700-word…

Google’s Unsatisfying Explanation for Retaining User Search Data

Following up on their recent decision to "anonymize" its server logs after 18-24 months, Google’s Global Privacy Counsel Peter Fleischer has posted an explanation about why Google captures and retains users' search queries in the first place. While a good…