Google on Monday responded to a new round of finger pointing, this time from Microsoft, which claimed Google was using falsified cookie policies to bypass certain security features in the Internet Explorer Web browser. The new accusations followed an earlier revelation that Google and other advertisers were using “a special code” to bypass Safari’s third-party cookie policies. Google had apparently heard enough, however, as the company issued a response to Microsoft’s allegations late Monday evening.
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“Microsoft omitted important information from its blog post today,” Google wrote in a statement. “Microsoft uses a ‘self-declaration’ protocol (known as ‘P3P’) dating from 2002 under which Microsoft asks websites to represent their privacy practices in machine-readable form. It is well known – including by Microsoft – that it is impractical to comply with Microsoft’s request while providing modern web functionality. We have been open about our approach, as have many other websites.”
In the end, Google’s stance is essentially, no we don’t comply with the policy but it’s outdated and most other companies don’t comply with it either. “Today the Microsoft policy is widely non-operational,” Google wrote. “A 2010 research report indicated that over 11,000 websites were not issuing valid P3P policies as requested by Microsoft.”