Google Inc. and Viacom Inc. have agreed to allow Google to anonymize YouTube visitor data before complying with a judge’s order to deliver the data to Viacom as part of a broader copyright lawsuit.
Google-owned YouTube announced late Monday night that the parties had agreed to allow it to substitute actual user and visitor IDs and internet protocol addresses with other unique values to help protect user privacy.
Obfuscating user IDs in such consistent ways does not guarantee complete anonymity (take a look at what happened with the AOL logs, which is not completely comparable but on some levels related), but it’s already better than the previously requested information.
[Thanks Juha-Matti Laurio!]
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