Wednesday, 21 August 2013

DNT lives!

The W3C's DNT proposal continues to march on. Thanks to an anonymous colleague for the link, his DNT value is undefined so I assume it to be "1".

From a technical viewpoint, DNT is quite simple in that adding a line to the HTTP headers is an instruction to any downstream carrier or user of that information that you do not wish to be tracked. The definition of what is means to be tracked and how this is enforced is of course somewhat hard to ascertain, but:

DNT: 0              // you can track me
DNT: 1              // don't track me

This got me wondering, given recent revelations, maybe we should add extra parameters or extend DNT to take into account other organisations who might be viewing our data?

I propose a 2-bit value:

DNT: 00     // please track me and supply me with obscure, irrelevant advertisements etc.
DNT: 01     // DNT as currently defined by W3C (meaning advertisers)
DNT: 10     // NSA, GCHQ etc are not allowed to track me, but advertisers can
DNT: 11     // no-one, not even government agencies or advertisers may track me.

No comments: