After having made a big push to increase the use of encrypted searches two years back, Internet search giant Google has apparently cut off keyword data altogether, and has confirmed that it is forwarding users to Google SSL Search even if they are not signed in.
In a statement made earlier this week, Google said that all its users who had logged into its service - for example, to check Gmail - would be forwarded to the Google SSL Search, if they wanted to carry out some online search.
With Google's statement revealing that the company has switched all searches over to encrypted searches using HTTPS, it is quite evident that keyword data will not be passed to site owners any more.
Given the fact that encrypted Google searches do not pass the keyword data through to websites, the ability of the sites to track users with the help of their keyword searches is eliminated. As such, it is not possible for most website owners to segment users by keywords within their web analytics software.
With regard to Google move to cut off keyword data completely, a Google spokesperson told Search Engine Watch: "We added SSL encryption for our signed-in search users in 2011, as well as searches from the Chrome omnibox earlier this year. We're now working to bring this extra protection to more users who are not signed in."
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