Apple has come up with a notable update to its Safari web browser, strengthening privacy facilities as a means of battling cross-site tracking and outstrip rival offerings.
Safari’s Intelligent Tracking Prevention (ITP), where the prior versions enabled users with the option to stop advertisers monitoring browsing activity, will now be able to stop all third-party cookies by default.
The update also includes ways of getting rid of websites by using login credentials in order to fingerprint user activity and to deactivate a number of cyberattacks called cross-site request forgery.
On macOS 10.15.4 and iOS/iPad OS 13.4, the new features are now available.
Google had revealed its Chome web browser in January and is also gradually pushing out third-party cookies. Although, experimental builds are the only was the feature is available now and seems like the stable versions will only be available in 2022.
John Wilander, Apple WebKit Security Engineer had celebrated its zero-tolerance policy with respect to cross-site tracking, in a blog post about the update.
“This is a significant improvement for privacy since it removes any sense of exceptions or ‘a little bit of cross-site tracking is allowed’,” he said.
“Safari continues to pave the way for privacy on the web, this time as the first mainstream browser to fully block third-party cookies by default. As far as we know, only the Tor Browser has featured full third-party cookie blocking before Safari.”
Apple has hopes for other browser providers to be inspired by the update to bring on equivalent pro-privacy measures.
“We will report on our experiences of full third-party cookie blocking to the privacy groups in W3C to help other browsers take the leap,” Wilander added.