Microsoft Bing to Forget Your IP After 6 Months

Microsoft today announced that it is cutting the number of months it retains "the entire Internet Protocol address associated with search queries" to six months. This is down from the 18 months it takes under current policy.

The move follows Google's September '08 decision to reduce its 18-month data retention period to nine months and Yahoo!'s December '08 pledge to anonymize user data within 90 days.

"This change is the result of a number of factors including a continuing evaluation of our business needs, the current competitive landscape and our ongoing dialogue with privacy advocates, consumer groups, and regulators – including the Article 29 Working Party, the group of 27 European national data protection regulators charged with providing advice to the European Commission and other EU institutions on data protection, " Microsoft said in a statement.

Microsoft says the new time limit will come into effect over the next 12 to 18 months, adding that the core components of its policy will remain the same.

At present Microsoft's policy is as follows:

As soon as Microsoft receives a Bing search query we take steps to de-identify the data by separating it from account information that could identify the person who performed the search.  Then, at 18 months, we take the additional step of deleting the IP address, the de-identified cookie ID and any other cross-session IDs associated with the query.

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  • this is just creepy, i really see no benefit in keeping the IP Addresses. Like Microsoft really needs to know that i search "bootylicious"
    19
  • HonisIf you think that's creepy I hope you never find out how long Google keeps that information.


    Stated clearly in the article.

    "The move follows Google's September '08 decision to reduce its 18-month data retention period to nine months and Yahoo!'s December '08 pledge to anonymize user data within 90 days."
    14
  • jonpaul37this is just creepy, i really see no benefit in keeping the IP Addresses. Like Microsoft really needs to know that i search "bootylicious"

    If you think that's creepy I hope you never find out how long Google keeps that information.
    10
  • Other Comments
  • this is just creepy, i really see no benefit in keeping the IP Addresses. Like Microsoft really needs to know that i search "bootylicious"
    19
  • That's a lot of harddrives to keep 18 months of data. Good cost cutting measure.
    2
  • jonpaul37this is just creepy, i really see no benefit in keeping the IP Addresses. Like Microsoft really needs to know that i search "bootylicious"

    If you think that's creepy I hope you never find out how long Google keeps that information.
    10