The search giant currently sets cookies to delete in 2038, but Peter Fleischer, Google's global privacy counsel, said in a posting on the company's blog that the company will now delete the cookies after two years.
However, this two-year time limit resets every time users visit the Google website.
"After listening to feedback from users and privacy advocates, we have concluded that it would be a good thing to significantly shorten the lifetime of our cookies, as long as we could find a way to do so without artificially forcing users to re-enter their basic preferences at arbitrary points in time," he said.
"In the coming months, Google will start issuing our users cookies that will be set to auto-expire after two years, while auto-renewing the cookies of active users during this time period.
"In other words, users who do not return to Google will have their cookies auto-expire after two years."
Google is under increasing pressure to address concerns over privacy. The company now renders user information anonymous after 18 months as a result of discussions with the EU.
Google's cookies save user preferences such as search settings and whether SafeSearch is activated. The settings can be modified at any time from within the browser.
Google vows to delete cookies
By Iain Thomson on Jul 18, 2007 12:20PM