So what? Cookies aren't going to matter for much longer anyway.
Google, Facebook, and Microsoft are all developing new systems to track your online moves, which rely far less on cookies. Instead of simply dealing with cookies, people who value online privacy are going to have work around at least three new Web use tracking technologies.
Google appears to be switching to AdID, which is short for Anonymous identifier for advertising. While Google has declined to comment on what's what in AdID, it appears that every users of Google services, such as Gmail, Google Chat, and Google+, the Chrome Web browser, and the Android operating system would be assigned an unique ID number. This would enable Google to pull together data for advertisers on not just what users are doing on the Web, but what they're doing with any Google-related Internet service.
Officially, all that Google is saying, according to a Google spokesperson, is "We believe that technological enhancements can improve users’ security while ensuring the web remains economically viable. We and others have a number of concepts in this area, but they’re all at very early stages."
This data is then recorded in Hadoop-based big data databases. Once there, it used with your Facebook user data to provide marketers with the information they need to target you with their advertising.
If that creeps you out, Microsoft does make it easy to opt out of it. The company states "Customers can easily turn the advertising ID off and on during their Windows 8.1 device setup or anytime afterwards."
So why are all three Internet powers doing this? There are two major reasons. First, each method gives each company more data and control over the data to lure advertisers into using their systems.
Second, Google and Microsoft's methods let them track you even when you're not using their browsers for your Internet activities. This is especially important to better monetize mobile apps, which frequently rely on Internet connections without the overt use of a Web browser.
And you thought the NSA spying was unnerving! Everyone is doing it. Welcome to the Web, circa 2013. Privacy? What privacy?