How digital privacy is reshaping the internet

The year is 1994. Stanford student Jerry Yang builds the world’s first Web index, which he calls Yahoo! Inc. while Mosaic Communications launches the world’s first commercially available web browser, Netscape Navigator. At a time when most software was still distributed on diskette, Netscape quickly gained popularity when it was made available for download. And although no one thought to mention it at the time, there was a humble but crucial technical protocol called the cookie. This highly influential cookie will eventually outlive not only the company that invented it, but many other online titans.

Originally developed to provide websites with an anonymous way to identify and remember things about you as you browse the web, cookies were quickly repurposed to support targeted online advertising. Now, over 25 years later, the cookie has been warned, sending the industry to find a better solution. Most players in the ecosystem are now placing greater importance on consumer privacy and the role they play in protecting that privacy. This can only be a good thing for consumers.

For companies that undertake privacy-conscious initiatives, they will reap the benefits. A YouGov survey reveals that more than half (61%) of Indians are comfortable with the use of their data for advertising purposes when they have more control over its use.

It’s time to recreate the fabric of the internet

While Google’s decision to delay the abandonment of cookies gave the industry time to breathe, the months ahead will demand that we move on to building a better ecosystem for everyone. The phasing out of cookies presents an opportunity for the internet to reset. We need to fix this partly because the economics of the Internet haven’t changed much in the last 25 years: it’s ad-supported. We “pay” for the news we read, the music we listen to and the TV shows we broadcast by watching or listening to advertising.

However, to do so effectively will require an identity framework far better than the cookie ever could be, while providing greater privacy and control for consumers over how and when their data is shared, regardless of device or channel.

That’s why a cookie-free future should be welcomed with enthusiasm.

Take a consumer-centric approach

Whether it’s GDPR, CCPA or India’s Data Protection Bill, the focus has rightly been on protecting consumer privacy and maintaining business efficiency. The industry must develop use cases that meet these emerging regulatory requirements. The most effective way to begin this work is to design from the consumer’s perspective to improve privacy and control for consumers.

Without this focus, there will always be questions about motivations and ownership.

Stakeholders are now rallying around a new solution: Unified ID 2.0 (UID 2.0). UID 2.0 provides stakeholders with a common, modern currency for the open internet; one that better explains its value to consumers; and giving the consumer greater control over their data, while enabling businesses to reach their audience in a meaningful way. Originally developed by The Trade Desk, UID 2.0 represents a neutral and independent identification solution that is open source, which means that the entire advertising ecosystem and community can build on it and help improve it. .

Identity solutions like UID 2.0 are here to preserve the value exchange of the Internet: allowing brands and publishers to continue to reach new audiences, while allowing consumers to dictate who they share their data with, on the basis of an anonymized unique identifier which also makes it possible to define their preferences. changed whenever they want.

Privacy will shape the new age of the Internet

Brands need to assess their exposure, ensure data collection practices carry relevant consents and are implemented more transparently. The industry must do better to tell the consumer exactly how their data is being used and what utility it brings to the consumer as the bar is raised for all players in the ecosystem.

The new approach to online privacy will not be solved by technology or a third-party partner alone. It will be solved by upgrading the daily interactions between consumers, publishers and technology companies together.

A new common, modern and transparent currency that improves the relationship between content creators, consumers and advertisers, regardless of platform, represents the next era in privacy and how the world relates to the Internet. in its entirety.



The opinions expressed above are those of the author.


Previous Global Web Design Services Market Size, Scope and Forecast 2022-2030
Next Five consultancies among the UK's top 100 LGBTQ+ employers