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Those Annoying Website Pop-Ups About Cookies — What Should You Do About Them?

Two of the most popular web browsers, Apple's Safari and Mozilla's Firefox, block tracking cookies by default, and Microsoft's Edge browser is automatically set to block some of them. Google has said that its Chrome browser, the most widely used one on the market, will stop supporting third-party cookies in 2023.

And even browsers that don't block all third-party cookies by default can be easily adjusted to do so.

Another option is to equip your browser to send the sites you visit the "Do not sell my information" signal developed by the Global Privacy Control coalition. Two browsers — Brave and DuckDuckGo — send the signal by default, and the others can send it with the help of downloadable extensions. After some sites refused to recognize the signal, the attorney general's office adopted a regulation in 2020 clearly requiring them to do so.

The expanded online privacy law that voters approved through Proposition 24 in 2020, the California Privacy Rights Act, goes one step further, barring companies from presenting a degraded or more expensive version of their site to browsers that send a Do Not Sell signal. That law takes effect on Jan. 1, 2023.

The new law also creates a California Privacy Protection Board to step up enforcement of the state's online data rules. In the meantime, consumers who come across websites that appear to be violating the privacy law can file complaints with the attorney general's office.

Distributed by Tribune Content Agency, LLC.

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