Rob Hof writes on Businessweek's The Tech Beat Blog:
Google and other online services have long been criticized for collecting unimaginable amounts of data on its users, such as what they've searched for. And many of them keep that personally identifiable data indefinitely, raising privacy concerns. That's about to change, at least in Google's case.More here.
Good thing, since there have been recent incidents that highlight the privacy threats that data pose, such as AOL's release of private data on individuals last year and the Department of Justice's 2005 subpoena requesting months of search data from several search sites, which Google refused to do.
So what Google's announcing now is a change in its privacy policies intended to reduce the potential for misuse of data. By the end of the year or so, it plans to make the data in its server logs anonymous after 18 to 24 months.