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from the L.A. Times

Apple adds 'do not track' tool to Safari browser in Mac OS X Lion, report says


Apple has included a "do not track" feature to its Safari web browser that will block advertisers and other websites from tracking a user's surfing habits, according to a report.

The feature hasn't been rolled out to the public yet, but it has been added to Safari in the latest release of Apple's in-development operating system, Mac OS X Lion, which is currently only available for now to Apple-certified programmers, according to a report from the Wall Street Journal.

Apple officials were unavailable for comment on the report Wednesday afternoon.

Mac OS X Lion, and an updated version of Safari along with it, are set to be released this Summer. Apple has said Lion will include many new features that will bring its user experience a bit closer to that of its iOS operating system, which runs on the iPad, iPhone and iPod Touch.

Mozilla's Firefox 4 and Microsoft's Internet Explorer 9, two other popular Web browsers, already have similar "do not track" features.

So far, Google's Chrome browser has yet to add such a consumer tool, but third-party plug-ins have been created and are free for download online and Google has promised such a feature will come soon.

In February, Rep. Jackie Speier (D-Calif.) introduced a bill into Congress that would create a law giving the Federal Trade Commission to right to create regulations that would force online advertisers to not record a consumer's online behavior if that person doesn't want to be tracked, similar to the Do Not Call Registry created in 2003.


Microsoft Internet Explorer 9 to let users list sites they do and don't want tracking them

Google Chrome, Mozilla Firefox announce tools to block Web tracking by advertisers

'Do Not Track Me Online' privacy bill introduced by California Rep. Jackie Speier

-- Nathan Olivarez-Giles

Photo: The blue compass icon for Apple's Safari browser is displayed in the dock of an Apple computer running an older version of Mac OS X. Credit: aditza121 via Flickr

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