Since The Intercept’s founding, reader privacy has been a top priority in the design of our website and how we operate. We were early to embrace encrypted content delivery, went the extra mile to anonymize readers when counting them, and sought to avoid disclosure of online activity to third parties whenever practical.
Today, we’re publishing what we call our “privacy philosophy,” a short summary of the commitments and values that underpin the decisions we make around privacy. We hope this document will provide clarity about those decisions, as well as accountability to ensure our actions live up to our ideals.
The document is not simply a piece of public information; it will also guide how we operate internally. It was created as part of a collaborative process that brought together members of our editorial, product, and development teams. (Ryan Chanatry, vice president of audience development and intelligence at our parent company, First Look, shepherded this process.)
The idea behind the privacy philosophy is to help answer questions like, “Can we use this third-party system on our site, or should we build our own tool?” and “Why do we shield readers from analytics trackers, but sometimes embed tweets and YouTube videos?” It also points toward some coming privacy improvements (for example, in how we handle those embedded tweets and YouTube videos).
We hope our new privacy philosophy will be another major step forward in how we protect and inform Intercept readers. Please share any thoughts you have about it, or our privacy practices generally, directly or in the comments below.