It’s a Wrap for Yahoo’s DNT Policy

Yahoo Cuts Their Do Not Track Option for Users

Yahoo’s DNT (Do Not Track) policy, which allows users the choice to opt out of third party web-based tracking, will no longer be available. The tracking is done on all Yahoo owned platforms across the board including sites like Flickr and Tumbler. Users will once again be closely monitored and followed online. While Yahoo still offers users the ability to cease targeted advertisements, everything else is now back in their hands. This comes just two years after Yahoo’s DNT policy was initially announced. The demand for alternative search engines that protect user’s personal information are quickly increasing in popularity. What most users are unaware of is that while DNT is a step in the right direction, DNT policies don’t offer complete protection from personal information being tracked. You still may be tracked some of the time and you may see a few ads here and there. It is a misleading title to say the least.   Untitled

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Yahoo claims a “customized approach” is best

Google and Facebook have simply ignored user requests for a Do Not Track option and now Yahoo has dropped it as well. This is causing an uproar for privacy supporters who say it is an absolute violation of user rights. The sole purpose of tracking on these search engines is to obtain a large amount of information for advertising purposes. Profiles including topics you have searched, your sex, age, medical records, political preferences etc are all recorded, collected, and often sold to advertisers. If you have noticed certain ads following you around the web, this is why. If you search for a specific topic, you will more than likely see similar ads throughout your experience across the web. Yahoo stands its ground and was quick to combat naysayers with “The best web experience is a personalized one.” The big question is..where will it end? There have already been talks of legal action being taken to protect internet user rights. It seems as though Yahoo and other alike search engines do not have the user’s best interest at heart. It also seems obvious that online search engines would want to listen to the vast number of user requests for such privacy settings being put into place. You would think it would be motivation enough for the Yahoo/Google search engines if users went elsewhere for their daily searches. It’s 2014 and individuals should have the right to dictate whether or not they want to be tracked on the web. Storing of any/all personal information of users should always be in the hands of those internet users.  

Alternative search engines

For users that want to avoid the search engine giants, there are more options at your disposal. If you are looking for search engine alternatives that are practicing the DNT policy, websites like DuckDuckGo and StartPage stand by their Do Not Track privacy offering. DuckDuckGo is still not on Google/Yahoo’s level as far as number of searches goes, but with the recent announcements, their popularity has catapulted through the roof. More and more users want to take back control of their online experience and command privacy, and DuckDuckGo delivers just that. They also offer DuckDuck “goodies” which are special search queries that instantly provide answers, such as how much to tip…   Duck Duck Go   StartPage is also changing the way people search and offers internet users the ability to search without collecting personal information and sharing it. StartPage shares on their website, “In August 2006, the online world was jarred when AOL accidentally released three months’ worth of aggregated search data from 650,000 of its users, publishing all the details in an online database. That database is still searchable. It is an absolute eye-opener to see the potential for privacy nightmares.” Users need to beware of the search engines they are using and their tracking capabilities. The safety of important personal information depends on it.