An upcoming Chrome option allows users to log into Google accounts without logging into the browser. The change was prompted by a backlash among users and privacy advocates.
Chrome 69, which came out earlier this month, logs all Google users into Chrome, even if they’ve previously opted out of signing into Chrome. This did not enable Chrome’s sync feature, but some users saw it as intrusive.
Chrome 70, scheduled for general release on October 15, will include a toggle (seen above) allowing users to sign into Google service like Gmail without signing into Chrome. From an official Google Blog post:
While we think sign-in consistency will help many of our users, we’re adding a control that allows users to turn off linking web-based sign-in with browser-based sign-in—that way users have more control over their experience. For users that disable this feature, signing into a Google website will not sign them into Chrome.
Chrome 69 also stopped users from deleting their Google cookies, something Google also addressed:
We’re also going to change the way we handle the clearing of auth cookies. In the current version of Chrome, we keep the Google auth cookies to allow you to stay signed in after cookies are cleared. We will change this behavior that so all cookies are deleted and you will be signed out.
It’s unlikely the vast majority of Chrome users will ever think about these features, or even realize they exist. But Google took the time to respond to concerns and provide options, which is something. We just wish all of these changes were communicated more clearly, and opt-outs were more clearly offered, to begin with.