Mozilla (opens in new tab) CTO Eric Rescorla has raised several concerns over Google’s Privacy Budget proposal to restrict fingerprinting.
Google’s Privacy Budget is a proposal to restrict fingerprinting a user by measuring the amount of information requested by websites, eventually blocking access to such revealing details once a certain limit is exceeded.
“Our analysis identifies a number of potential issues with the proposal that call its practicality into question,” writes (opens in new tab) Rescorla noting that it’s particularly hard to correctly estimate the amount of leaked information.
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Mozilla isn’t the only browser that’s raised eyebrows over Google’s new proposal, and other Chrome (opens in new tab)-rivals such as Brave (opens in new tab) have shared their objections (opens in new tab) as well, according to The Register.
Finger in every pie
A part of Google’s larger Privacy Sandbox (opens in new tab) initiative to develop new standards for websites in order to offer a personalized experience without jeopardizing a user’s privacy, the Privacy Budget proposal aims to reign in browser fingerprinting.
Browser fingerprinting is an online tracking technique that involves collecting various data points that internet users make available to websites through their browsers, which can be used to track users across the web.
While Rescorla thinks Google’s proposal is “an attractive idea,” he’s concerned about the feasibility of the plan, sharing his objections in a detailed technical analysis.
In addition to raising concerns about the difficulty in estimating the amount of information leaked by a particular fingerprinting information, such as screen resolution, or type of browser, Rescorla also believes that its enforcement is likely to lead to website breakages.
Furthermore he adds that the plan itself could perhaps be used to track users defeating its purpose altogether.
"We appreciate Mozilla’s engagement throughout this process as we all work to build a more private web without third party cookies and other forms of invasive tracking. This is our collaborative process working as intended," a Google spokesperson told The Register welcoming Mozilla’s feedback.
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Via The Register (opens in new tab)