Google’ privacy statement currently contains two thousand two hundred words including other numerous interesting tidbits. The gigantic search engine collects crucial personal information without the consent of the users. Among the information collected include; device information, Google collects hardware information, version of the operating system, cell network information and cell numbers (Dutch Data Protection Authority 25). Secondly, login information such as passwords, usernames is collected when one uses Google services, and the company automatically collects information stored in data logs. Thirdly, location information is also collected, that is, user’s actual location, for instance GPS signals from cell devices. Fourthly, the firm uses unspecified technologies for collecting data once a user visits Google services including sending cookie to the user terminals. This information collected illegally has landed Google in a lot of problems.
In many nations globally Google has faced fines along with legal battles. For instance the South Korean national Police Agency proceeded to raided Google headquarters in the nation for the connection of privacy breach which later lead to fining the company. Google was suspected for gathering private information from wireless networks by use of Street Vehicles, which were also equipped with cameras.
In the US Google was fined $17 million towards compensation to thirty-seven states due to their tendencies to track customers online in absence of their consent and knowledge. This settlement was due to Google circumvention of Apple’s Safari browser privacy settings. Safari blocks tracking cookies however Google overrode these privacy settings and tracked users personal computers and iPhones (Techcrunch 7).
Google uses a number of instruments to collect personal data. Firstly, the AdSense, which scans through clients, emails in search for so called sensitive information. The AdSense software could be commanded to automatically collect information and emails carrying certain information that could be beneficial for Google (Meul, and Finn 10). The Google Glasses contains a camera that takes a snap of the screen once the user brinks. The Glasses spy on users’ screens transmitting that information to Google, this is serious breach of user privacy. Additionally Google street view vehicles have enabled the firm collect information form wireless networks globally and which has landed the company in lots of trouble. Google cloud based storage drive that individuals use to store their private documents of sensitive nature are usually at risk of spied on by the firm.
The collected information poses lots of risks to
the owners’ lives, property along with their security (JURIST 5). This is
because private emails might expose business deals, sensitive governmental
communication and so on this information would even lead to wars among nations.
Personal information regarding users’ property, bank accounts, and occupations
and so on places their properties at risk. User’s passwords could be used to access user’s
sensitive sites and information placing their properties, integrity and their
jobs at risk.
Chopra, Samir, and Laurence White. “Privacy and Artificial Agents, or, Is Google Reading My Email?” Department of CIS: Brooklyn College CUNY. N.p., 2010. Web. 7 Sept. 2014. <http://www.sci.brooklyn.cuny.edu/~schopra/choprawhite497.pdf>.
Dutch Data Protection Authority. Dutch Data Protection Authority. N.p., 2013. Web. 7 Sept. 2014. <http://www.dutchdpa.nl/downloads_overig/en_rap_2013-google-privacypolicy.pdf>.
JURIST. “JURIST – South Korea police raid Google office over data collection.” JURIST – Legal News & Commentary. N.p., 2010. Web. 7 Sept. 2014. <http://jurist.org/paperchase/2010/08/south-korea-police-raid-google-office-over-data-collection.php>.
Meul, Gus, and Caitlin Finn. “Google: Trust, Choice, and Privacy.” Ethica Publishing Inc. N.p., 2012. Web. 7 Sept. 2014. <http://www.ethicapublishing.com/ethical/3CH15.pdf>.
Techcrunch. “Google Privacy Blunder Shares Your Docs Without Permission | TechCrunch.” TechCrunch. N.p., 2009. Web. 7 Sept. 2014. <http://techcrunch.com/2009/03/07/huge-google-privacy-blunder-shares-your-docs-without-permission/>.
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