For all the talk among among policymakers and the press about online privacy, it still isn’t clear how much average consumers are even aware of online ad tracking. Firefox, the browser of choice for a third of all internet users, is apparently looking to change that. The beta of the latest version of Firefox trumpets the new “Do Not Track” feature prominently—listing it, in large font, as the very first item on the “What’s New in Firefox 4” page. The move could increase the pressure on other browser companies as well as advertisers to beef up their own privacy options.
Mozilla announced months ago that it would put a Do Not Track option in the new version of Firefox—so in that sense, the release of the beta version isn’t a surprise. But what is unexpected is the headline “Opt Out of Ad Tracking” splashed across the company’s upgrade page.
Mozilla, the developer of the Firefox browser, is working a feature that will allow users to opt-out of online behavioral advertising.
The goal is to give users "a deeper understanding of and control over personal information online," Mozilla's head of privacy said in a blog posted on Sunday [see pic below].
The feature will allow users to configure their Firefox browser to tell websites and advertisers that they would like to opt-out of any advertising based on their behavior, Alex Fowler [cq] wrote in his blog post. The user's preference is communicated to websites and third party ad servers using a new "Do Not Track HTTP header", which is sent with every click or page view in Firefox.