Google would now stop its long-standing practice of scanning the contents of individual Gmail accounts for advertising uses, the company announced in a blog post. The practice allows the company to access the contents of email messages and use them to deliver targeted ads within Gmail itself.
A Google statement said that Gmail users would still see personalized ads and marketing messages but these would be based on other data, which may include search queries or browsing habits. Google's practice of analyzing incoming and outgoing emails of its free consumer Gmail users has been criticized on privacy concerns.
Diane Green, Google’s cloud division head said in a blog that the free Gmail service would now follow the same practices as its corporate G Suite Gmail. “Consumer Gmail content will not be used or scanned for any ads personalization after this change. This decision brings Gmail ads in line with how we personalize ads for other Google products,” Green added.
The move to end targeted advertising in Gmail doesn't mean users won't see ads anymore. The search-engine company still has access to search histories, YouTube browsing, and other Chrome activity as long as you’re signed into your Gmail account.
Meanwhile, last week, Google announced that it has started using the Brotli algorithm to compress Google Display Ads “whenever possible” that results in data savings of 15-40 percent. The switch overall translates to a reduction of “tens of thousands of gigabytes” every day.