Bing to Start Encrypting Search Traffic

To further protect user data, Bing will start encrypting its search traffic by default this summer.

The move is in line with Bing’s offering users the option to encrypt search traffic, something the Microsoft search giant started doing about a year and a half ago. With encrypted search traffic – which means that traffic originating from Bing will increasingly come from httpS://, rather than httP:// – Bing will continue to pass along a referrer string, allowing marketers and webmasters to identify traffic more easily.

However, with privacy in mind, Bing will provide limited query term data without including the actual query terms. That data includes Search Query Terms Report, which allows users to see what queries triggered their ads, along with associated metrics such as clicks, impressions and conversions; Universal Event Tracking, which provides enhanced metrics, such as bounce rates, pages per visit and length of visit; and Bing Webmaster Tools, which maintains keyword and ranking data within the tools.

“While this change may impact marketers and webmasters, we believe that providing a more secure search experience for our users is important,” writes Duane Forrester, senior product manager for Bing in a blog post.

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