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Bing to encrypt search traffic by default

This HTTPS thing is catching on

Microsoft product manager Duane Forrester says it will encrypt all Bing search traffic later this year.

Forrester says the move follows Cupertino's 2014 decision to allow users to opt-in to HTTPS for web searches.

"Beginning this (Northern hemisphere) summer, we will begin the process of encrypting search traffic by default," Forrester blogged.

"This means that traffic originating from Bing will increasingly come from https as opposed to http."

Microsoft will also drop query search terms from referrers strings in a bid to further shore up privacy.

Web ad bods will be able to learn the queries that lead users to their pages through Microsoft's search terms report, universal event tracking, and webmaster tools.

" While this change may impact marketers and webmasters, we believe that providing a more secure search experience for our users is important," Forrester says.

The HTTPS move brings Microsoft up to speed with Google which began encrypting search traffic in 2011 making it compulsory in 2013, and Yahoo! which deployed HTTPS for its search in 2014.

Encrypting search traffic and other non-sensitive web traffic is seen widely by privacy and security pundits as necessary to a more safer web. ®

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