Comments Subscribe to Personal Liberty News Feed Subscribe to Personal Liberty

Microsoft offers to discard search data faster

December 10, 2008 by  

Some search engines store data for more than a yearMicrosoft has told European privacy advocates that it is willing to agree to hold on to web searchers’ records for a shorter period of time, as long as its competitors follow suit.

The internet giant has come under fire from privacy groups for its policy of holding people’s search data for 18 months. Yahoo keeps information for 13 months and Google for nine.

Data that is kept includes internet protocol addresses and tracking cookies which can potentially be traced back to individuals.

Search engines generally maintain that collecting this information helps them better serve their customers – however, privacy experts have suggested that too much information on people is made readily available.

In a letter to European Commission data protection officials, Microsoft offered to shorten that length of time to six months before making it untraceable.

However, it said it will not enforce the decision unless Yahoo and Google do the same. So far, both companies say they do not plan to make changes.

The clash represents some differences in the way internet privacy issues are viewed in different countries. The New York Times reports that German and Swiss government officials have also objected to Google’s Street View maps – which feature photos of homes without the permission of the owners.

Personal Liberty News Desk

Facebook Conversations

Join the Discussion:
View Comments to “Microsoft offers to discard search data faster”

Comment Policy: We encourage an open discussion with a wide range of viewpoints, even extreme ones, but we will not tolerate racism, profanity or slanderous comments toward the author(s) or comment participants. Make your case passionately, but civilly. Please don't stoop to name calling. We use filters for spam protection. If your comment does not appear, it is likely because it violates the above policy or contains links or language typical of spam. We reserve the right to remove comments at our discretion.

Is there news related to personal liberty happening in your area? Contact us at


Sign Up For Personal Liberty Digest™!

PL Badge

Welcome to,
America's #1 Source for Libertarian News!

To join our group of freedom-loving individuals and to get alerts as well as late-breaking conservative news from Personal Liberty Digest™...

Privacy PolicyYou can opt out at any time. We protect your information like a mother hen. We will not sell or rent your email address to anyone for any reason.