The Death of the Third-Party Cookie

Written on March 7, 2022 by Stephanie Reid

Cookies have been used for many years by companies to help them track visitors to their websites. They are also used to help improve the experience of those visitors, as well as to collect data that helps the right audience see ads that they will like.

Third-party cookies are cookies created by a company besides the one whose website you are on. Basically, the website has hired another company to set cookies on their website to monitor the use and to set advertising on the website.

Third-Party Cookies

Though third-party cookies are not dangerous to either you or your computer, some people do consider them an invasion of their privacy (if I wanted my information sent to that company, I would have visited their website). However, most of the time third-party cookies will actually help improve your web-surfing experience by personalizing the ads that you see, maybe even advertising sales and discounts that you might be interested in.

The Death of Third-Party Cookies

There have recently been new laws passed that address the violation of privacy associated with third-party cookies. This, combined with the fact that enabling cookies increases your chances of being involved in a data breach, has caused some browsers to begin to automatically block all third-party cookies. Safari and Firefox are among these browsers; they allow no third-party cookies to operate on their browser.

Google Chrome, however, still allows third-party cookies to run on their browser, much to the chagrin of their users. This is one of the reasons that Google has since announced that it will begin to phase out all third-party cookies from Chrome, hopefully clearing all third-party cookies by the end of 2023. It is important to note that as long as you are browsing the internet in incognito mode, your browser will not store interactions, history, or cookies.

Who Will be Most Affected?

Since it is web users who are asking for more privacy when it comes to their information, it is not them who will see the most negative impacts of the death of the third-party cookie. This honour belongs to online marketing companies. These are the companies that will suffer when they are no longer able to track the correct data and get relevant ads to the right people. Since the announcement of Google’s plans to phase out the third-party cookie, many online marketing companies have expressed concerns and plans to return to email marketing. This will not be as effective as using cookies, but they hope that email marketing will keep them from going completely obsolete.

In conclusion, the third-party cookie has already begun to be phased out on internet browsers such as Firefox and Safari. However, since Chrome is the world’s most popular internet browser, online marketing companies are scrambling for ways to stay afloat after this goes into effect. Chrome hopes to be rid of all third-party cookies by the end of 2023.

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