May 31st, 2021

Companies like Google rely a lot on user information to help them sell ads and services. If they know what kind of things you search for and are interested in, they can then create ads that will tempt you to buy things, which in turn will let them charge advertisers more money because it works.

At the same time, the company has sort of championed user privacy, but that might not always be the truth. In a report from Insider, they have revealed unredacted court documents which seem to suggest that Google had purposely made the privacy settings on smartphones difficult for users to find.

They even allege that Google had pressured phone makers into keeping the privacy settings on phones hidden so that users would have a harder time to turn it off. The documents also suggest that Google had collected location data on users even after users had explicitly turned off location sharing.

This discovery is part of a lawsuit that Arizona Attorney General Mark Brnovich had filed against Google back in May 2020 over alleged illegal tracking of Android users’ location. Google has since responded to the documents in which they claim that Brnovich “and our competitors driving this lawsuit have gone out of their way to mischaracterize our services. We have always built privacy features into our products and provided robust controls for location data. We look forward to setting the record straight.”

Source: The Verge

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