Google Accused of Manipulation to Track Users

European consumer groups filed complaints against Google with regulators, accusing Google of covertly tracking users’ movements.

The complaints brought up a study from the Norwegian Consumer Council which concluded Google used “deceptive design and misleading information, which results in users accepting to be constantly tracked.” The Norwegian complaint continued, “Location data can reveal a lot about a person: real time movements, frequently visited places, daily routines, interests, etc.” Furthermore, “Constant location tracking and aggregation of location data over time can be used to build very detailed profiles of individuals and to infer religious beliefs, political leanings, and sexual orientation, among other things.”

Complaints have been filed against Google in the Czech Republic, Greece, Netherlands, Norway, Poland, Slovenia and Sweden.

Google is accused of tracking users’ movements via its Location History and Web & App Activity applications, which are built into all Google accounts. Almost 70 percent of European mobile phones run on the Android system.

 

 

Image: “Japan’s Net Surveillance Intelligence Agency, Regional Bureau of Telecommunications (総合通信局) and its branch ‘Kantou Regional Bureau of Telecommunications (関東総合通信局)’” by RYOTA NAKANISHI A ONE-MAN ARMY RETURNS TO THE HELL is licensed under CC BY-SA 2.0

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