Tag Archives: Search privacy

Microsoft to Delete IP Addresses From Bing Search Logs after 6 months

Microsoft has fired a new salvo into the search privacy wars, announcing it will delete IP addresses from the Bing search engine logs after 6 months.

Microsoft has decided to take the lead in search privacy and agree to the European Union’s demand that data retention be cut to six months. Previously, Microsoft de-identified its search logs immediately, but didn’t purge the IP address until 18 months. Now, de-identification still takes place immediately, and the IP addresses are completely removed in 6 months.

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More on Cuil's Non-Privacy Policy

Yesterday I posted that Cuil, the supposed “Google-killer” search engine that once took pride in not keeping any logs of its users’ activities, had dramatically altered its privacy policy, effectively stripping it of the strong privacy-protecting language it originally contained. Since then, I’ve received 3 communications from Cuil. The first was a tweet promising an […]

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Cuil's Famous Privacy Policy No Longer Protects Privacy

Remember Cuil, the search engine launched in 2008 that was supposed to be a Google-killer? Didn’t think so. Anyway, one of Cuil’s touted competitive advantages was that it didn’t track user search queries. Its original privacy policy (dated July 27, 2008) went to great lengths to make users feel comfortable about the privacy of their […]

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Google Dashboard: Convenient? Yes. Transparency, Choice and Control? Not so much.

Google describes Dashboard as a simple way to view “the data associated with your account”, and that it will provide users “greater transparency and control over their own data.” Elsewhere, Dashboard has been described as a “big concession to users’ privacy rights“, as the answer to the question: “What does Google know about me?”, and as a place providing users “more control over the personal information stored in Google’s databases“.

Unfortunately, Google Dashboard is none of these things.

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I Love Alaska: Amazing Film Inspired by AOL Search Data Release

Some filmmakers have produced an amazing series of episodes based on one person’s searches discovered in the AOL search data release debacle. Here’s the trailer: And the description from the website where you can view them all: August 4, 2006, the personal search queries of 650,000 AOL (America Online) users accidentally ended up on the […]

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Comparing Search Data Retention Policies of Major Search Engines

Well, according to Microsoft. As part of the on-going battle among major search engines related to search data retention policies, Microsoft has published this chart attempting to summarize and compare the state of anonymization in the search industry (click to enlarge). Few techncial details about how the companies enforce these policies have been made public, […]

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Yahoo! to Anonymize Data After 90 Days

There has been a lot of movemnet recently regarding how search engines treat the vast amounts of user data they collect. In early 2007, Google announced it would “anonymize” its user search logs after 18-24 months. Later that year, Google reluctantly decided to add an expiration date to its web cookie, while Ask.com (unsuccessfully) tried […]

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Google Shortens Data Retention to 9 Months

Quickly, as I’m rushing out the door to teach: Google has announced it will (reluctantly) shorten the amount of time it holds fully-identifiable information, and will “anonymize” search records after 9 months, rather than the current 18 months. This is big news…more later….

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New "Cuil" Search Engines Decides User Logs Aren't Necessary

Some former Googlers have launched a rival search engine named for the Gaelic word for knolwedge, Cuil. Cuil (pronounced like “cool”), which claims to have an index three times the size as Google and ten times as Microsoft, aims to provide a difference kind of search experience than its friends in Mountain View: Rather than […]

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Google (Quietly/Oddly) Adds Privacy Link to Homepage

After coming under attack for refusing to add a simple hyperlink to help users find their privacy policy, Google has added the word “privacy”, with a link to its privacy policy, to its home page (image via Google): Google, for whatever reason, isn’t directly acknowledging that there was public pressure to take this simple step. […]

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