Microsoft slams Google user data policy in new ads

LOS ANGELES (AP) ? Microsoft took out full-age ads in major newspapers Wednesday, slamming policy changes at search rival Google that allow it to merge user data across its services.

Microsoft offered up its own Web-based alternatives, saying for instance that users of its free email service, Hotmail, don’t have to worry about the content of their emails being used to serve up ads.

The ads appeared Wednesday in papers including USA Today, The Wall Street Journal and New York Times.

In response, Google issued a blog post in which it refuted what it called “myths” about its new privacy policy. The company does not dispute that it serves up ads based on words in its email service, Gmail.

Both companies offer several controls to prevent advertisers from tracking users’ online activity.