By replacing cookies, Google has recently introduced an innovative new way to make our browsing experience more secure and safe. Even though Apple and Microsoft don’t see eye to eye on the prospect, the tech tycoon argues that the new tracking method known as Federated Learning of Cohorts (FLoC) will hopefully prove more effective than traditional cookies. Nevertheless, there are those who believe that it would create more problems than it would solve.
Fortunately, Google is not coercing you into following the FLoC program, and opting out of it is rather easy when using your Chrome browser.
We’re going to discuss this FloC technology in detail in this article, including how to get out of it if you’ve been part of the program unknowingly. It’s time to get down to business. Let’s not waste any time.
What is FLoC?
The Federated Learning of Cohorts (FLoC) is a new Google tool that is part of Privacy Sandbox, a new arsenal of tools meant to diminish the amount and type of tracking and advertising that the company does. As Google claims, this technology will enable the internet to respect our privacy more. A small number of Chrome users in the US and other countries, such as India, Indonesia, Brazil, Japan, New Zealand, Mexico, and Australia, have already received the update.
Instead of tracking down just one person, Floc targets a group of people who share similar interests and online behavior. Therefore, similarly patterned users are grouped, and each group gets its own ID. In aggregate, these groups generate a cohort of information that is shared with ad publishers who then show the group’s cohort to people.
As reported by the Electronic Frontier Foundation (EFF), one of the major privacy concerns with FLoC is the fact that malware was going to have to circumvent anonymized IDs in thousands versus the millions that would be necessary with conventional cookies. In the end, website fingerprinting would become so easy that FLoC would be a problem-solver rather than a troublemaker
Steps to finding out if you are part of FLoC
In the months following the first disclosure of this technology, many people began opposing it. In a similar vein, EFF published an article in which they attacked Google for suggesting FloC. They also developed a website that allows users to learn if they’re a part of this emerging program.
Click on “Check FLoC ID” on this website to find out if you’re part of FLoC.
A FLoC ID will be checked in your browser upon clicking, and if one isn’t found, you will be informed accordingly. It appears that you are not among those affected by the FLoC origin trial. Users in the trial can be added or removed at any time by Google. FLoC will be turned on in the future, so you can check back here for more information.”
How to opt-out of FLoC on your Chromebook
Withdrawing from this program isn’t hard. Using your Chromebook, you can complete a couple of steps in no time. How to do that is outlined in the following guide. Let’s start.
1) Right next to the extensions bar you will find a hamburger icon titled “Customize and control Google Chrome.”.
2) Click on “Settings” from the drop-down menu that appears.
3) Click the “Privacy and Security” link once you open the “Settings” of your browser.
4) In the Privacy and Security section to the right, you’ll have to click on “Privacy Sandbox.” by doing so, you’ll be taken to a new tab, where you’ll disable FLoC.
5) Upon looking at the toggle beside the privacy sandbox trial, you’ll see that FLoC comes with this system. The browser cannot be added to such a program when it is switched off altogether.
For the most part, that’s all there is. A Chromebook can be used to opt-out of FLoC even if you don’t see the “Privacy Sandbox” option under “Privacy and Security.”. Now let’s take a look at that.
1) Click on “Cookies and other site data” under the “Privacy and security” section of your Chrome browser’s settings.
2) Now that you’ve completed the process, you can click on “Block third-party cookies.” This will eliminate all concerns about FLoC.
That’s it! You can, however, take care of FLoC in other ways, so keep reading to find out which ones.
Other ways to disable FLoC
A number of renowned companies have shown reluctance to work with FLoC, and the company has created quite a controversy. One way to avoid FLoC on your Chromebook is to install another web browser. Microsoft Edge, as well as Firefox, are impressive alternatives that have evolved from what they used to be. They are both great options due to the fact that FLoC is disabled by default for both.
You can also modify your search engine and surf the web with enhanced privacy by installing an extension called “DuckDuckGo Privacy Essentials” from the Chrome Web Store. Advanced encryption and hidden tracker blocking are claimed to be implemented by this program. Moreover, it blocks FLoC without requiring personal information.
FloC is Google’s response to how it tracks us online. Using this system, the ad industry will suffer no monetary losses and users can enjoy a better experience than they normally get from cookies. Some people have, however, opted out of FLoC and are looking for other ways to continue browsing normally. Throughout this article, we have shown you multiple ways to disable FLoC on your Chromebook, and if a particular method does not work, you can always try another. We wish you safe browsing from Chrome Ready!