Google to scrap personalised Gmail advertising

Google plans to stop the controversial practice of scanning Gmail inboxes to serve personalised ads in the interest of boosting its growing enterprise business.

Google to scrap personalised Gmail advertising

"G Suite’s Gmail [Google's enterprise email service] is already not used as input for ads personalization, and Google has decided to follow suit later this year in our free consumer Gmail service," Diane Greene, senior vice-president of Google Cloud, wrote in a blog post. "Consumer Gmail content will not be used or scanned for any ads personalization after this change."

By making this change, which will take place this year, Google plans to better unify the experience its customers receive between its enterprise and free email services. Currently, Google has more than 3 million companies paying for its G Suite services. 

It will also end a controversial practice that is no longer truly needed as Google can now target ads based on the personal information it gleans from its other services, such as search and YouTube.

"This decision brings Gmail ads in line with how we personalise ads for other Google products. Ads shown are based on users’ settings. Users can change those settings at any time, including disabling ads personalization. G Suite will continue to be ad free," Greene added.