Total Cookie Protection, a browser feature that competes with Safari’s privacy systems by controlling how cookies are used and reducing cross-site monitoring, has begun to roll out in Firefox.
Marketers make a lot of money tracking consumers online, and there are a lot of trackers out there that can keep track of a user’s surfing activities. Because data can be collected and mined for specific information, marketing firms can create complex profiles of online consumers to offer highly personalized advertisements.
New Firefox Feature “Total Cookie Protection”
Mozilla is releasing a feature called Total Cookie Protection, which will be set by default for customers of the browser on Mac and Windows, as part of a larger effort to prevent such tracking.
Total Cookie Protection uses so-called “cookie jars,” which are distinct stores for individual websites, to adjust how cookies are stored. The website, as well as any third-party content contained inside it, will place cookies in a cookie jar unique to that site.
Except for the originating site, no other website can access the cookies in that cookie jar once they’ve been saved. The cookies, in essence, block trackers from accessing cookies established for other sites, drastically limiting their knowledge of the user’s online habits.
The technique “strikes the balance between deleting the worst privacy features of third-party cookies – in particular the capacity to monitor you – and allowing those cookies to fulfill their less invasive use cases,” according to Mozilla in a blog post.
Total Cookie Protection builds on Mozilla’s earlier efforts to reduce the consequences of online trackers, such as the launch of Enhanced Tracking Protection in 2018 to block tracking activity.
It’s Not Happening for the First Time
Mozilla isn’t the only business working to make its browser more secure. Safari, Apple’s web browser, has seen numerous adjustments over the years, including improvements to its Intelligent Tracking Prevention bolstering its security for users.
According to sources, these modifications, which included elements to prevent tracker cooperation and severely limit the data that could be collected, were determined to be “stunningly effective” in 2019. Apple improved ITP in March 2020 to incorporate full third-party cookie blocking, among other enhancements.
Later, with iOS 14, Apple included App Monitoring Transparency, allowing users to drastically reduce the amount of data collected by apps for similar tracking objectives.