Privacy protection: Google will delete billions of personal information


Search engine giant Google will delete billions of personal information as part of a settlement aimed at ending lawsuits in which the technology company is accused of misleading its users into believing that their Internet activities would not be tracked when using “incognito” mode.

The lawsuit was filed in 2020 and accuses Google of tracking the activities of people using private browsing mode in its Chrome browser.

Chrome's “Incognito” online browsing mode ensures, in principle, that users' data remains private and that they are not subject to targeted advertising practices by companies.

Under the terms of the settlement, Google must delete “billions of data records” that relate to the private browsing activities of users using Incognito mode, according to court documents filed Monday in federal court in San Francisco.

Google will also update its information to notify users that it collects data each time a private browsing session is launched.

According to David Boies, the lawyer representing the plaintiffs, the settlement constitutes a “historic step in demanding honesty and accountability from dominant technology companies.”

“We are happy to delete old technical data that has never been associated with an individual and has never been used for any form of personalization,” said José Castañeda, spokesperson for Google.

Last September, Google agreed to pay $93 million as part of a settlement with the California attorney general's office to close a case in which the tech giant was accused of violating the Privacy Act. Protection of private life.

Google was accused of misleading users about how it used their location data. In addition to the $93 million settlement, the Alphabet subsidiary agreed to show users additional information about enabling location-related account settings and provide more transparency about location tracking.

The search engine was also accused of misleading users about their ability to opt out of geotargeted ads, which use location data to present personalized ads.

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