Google Faces a £2.7 Billion Lawsuit Over Selling Data Without Consent
Over the past few years there has been a rising concern about Google and their policies related to data. There have been various accusations against Google that they have been tracking data and selling it without consent. However things took an ugly turn recently as the company now faces a £2.7 billion lawsuit.
A consumer campaign, ‘Google You Owe Us’ has filed a class action lawsuit against Google, claiming that the company has been unlawfully gathering data from their iPhones without their permission. The primary accusation here is that Google has been going through the browsing history of iPhone users without their permission.
This campaign claims that at least 5.4 Million users are affected by this. If these allegations are proven to be true, Google will be liable to pay £2.7 billion to the consumers. This will be a record breaking number as it will be the biggest amount ever paid in compensation to customers in the UK.
The £2.7 billion number comes as Google owes about £500 to 5.4 Million consumers. The campaign alleges that Google harvested user data between June of 2011 and February of 2012. The lawsuit suggests that Google bypassed the default privacy settings on the iPhone, tricking the phones to release personal data from the Safari Web browser. This is known as ‘The Safari Workaround’.
The two laws that this campaign is using against Google are those of Section 4 of the Data Protection Act of 1998, which states that such a practice is against the law, and Section 12 of the same act, which states that consumers can demand compensation for the same.
Richard Lloyd, who is heading the campaign, said: “I believe that what Google did was quite simply against the law. Their actions have affected millions, and we’ll be asking the courts to remedy this major breach of trust. Through this action, we will send a strong message to Google and other tech giants in Silicon Valley that we’re not afraid to fight back if our laws are broken.”
You can visit the campaign’s website here.