A recently introduced bug in the Chrome browser affected both Google and YouTube and prevented deleting of cookies and site data upon quitting the browser.
The issue was first reported by iOS developer Jeff Johnson, who noticed that in the Chrome version 86.0.4240.75, the local storage data of Google and YouTube remained present even after restarting the browser.
Site data allows websites to store users’ personal information, while cookies are used to track users’ identities and preferences across various sites. The bug in Chrome is allowing the affected sites to track users even if they are deleting their cookie and site data every time the browser is closed.
Google responded to the issue and said that it has been working on fixing it. A Google spokesman stated that the company is aware of the bug and how it is affecting the first-party Google sites. Google further stated that the issue would be resolved in the coming days.
It is likely that Google’s attempt to phase out the browser’s support for hosted apps resulted in the bug. Google decided to phase out third-party cookies earlier this year and planned to replace them with less-invasive technologies.