Update: Google shut down development of the Keep My Opt-Outs extension for Chrome. It shows as deprecated now in the Chrome Store and the company suggests to use the extension Protect My Choices instead which is developed by a third-party.
Personalization is the latest buzz word on the Internet. Search engines like Google for instance personalize search results based on previous searches, Amazon likes to show you items that they think you like and ads on the web use information to display ads that they think are more relevant to you.
Some users do not like personalization as it is directly linked to tracking. Sites and companies need to track a users movement and actions before they can show personalized content. They try to know as much as possible about you as it makes ads more relevant and therefore more likely to be clicked on.
Keep My Opt-Outs is a Chrome extension developed by Google to permanently disable online ad personalization via cookies. The service opts-out of personalized advertisement by companies that have adopted the industry privacy standards for online advertising which means that it is still possible to see personalized advertisement on the web.
Users can run a test on the organization's website to see which companies are currently customizing ads for the browser. Deleting cookies regularly reduces the likelihood of personalized ads.
The Chrome extension opts out of all personalized ads of participating companies which may affect the advertisement that is displayed on websites.
The extension is constantly updated, for instance with opt out code for companies that recently adopted the industry privacy standards.
So what's better, deleting cookies regularly, installing the Chrome extension or to opt out manually?
Users who delete cookies regularly are only tracked per browsing session which means that it is still possible to see personalized ads in a session. Manually opting out is only an option if the opt out cookie is not deleted.
The Chrome extension on the other hand blocks personalized ads during sessions as well. It is however only available for the Chrome browser. It is recommended to run the linked text again after you install the browser extension in Chrome to make sure that it is working correctly.
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Ghacks is a technology news blog that was founded in 2005 by Martin Brinkmann. It has since then become one of the most popular tech news sites on the Internet with five authors and regular contributions from freelance writers.