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Judge Accepts $22.5M Google Fine In Privacy Case

Soulskill posted about a year and a half ago | from the more-interesting-if-she'd-accepted-a-$22.5M-bribe dept.

Google 25

itwbennett writes "Judge Susan Illston has said she will approve a $22.5 million settlement deal between Google and the FTC over the company's practice of circumventing privacy protections in Apple's Safari browser to place tracking cookies on user's computers. Judge Illston also expressed concern about what will happen to the tracking data Google collected, since the settlement doesn't call for Google to destroy the data."

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25 comments

Don't be evil, indeed. (1)

kriston (7886) | about a year and a half ago | (#42005473)

Don't be evil, indeed.

Re:Don't be evil, indeed. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#42005637)

There's nothing evil about working around a browser's broken third-party cookie implementation. It's not like the user specifically chose not to have third-party cookies set and Google is ignoring them. They obviously want to use google cookies if they click the +1 button.

Re:Don't be evil, indeed. (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#42006069)

You're a retard. Everything you wrote was wrong.

Re:Don't be evil, indeed. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#42006677)

So you're claiming Safari does not block third party cookies by default without any user interaction required?

Re:Don't be evil, indeed. (1)

stephanruby (542433) | about a year and a half ago | (#42006121)

"They obviously want to use google cookies if they click the +1 button. "

As you can see from their official sample code for google +1 buttons, their button doesn't need to be clicked to track users across domains since their url gets loaded as soon as their script loads.

<!-- Place this tag where you want the +1 button to render. -->
<div class="g-plusone" data-annotation="inline" data-width="300"></div>

<!-- Place this tag after the last +1 button tag. -->
<script type="text/javascript">
  (function() {
    var po = document.createElement('script'); po.type = 'text/javascript'; po.async = true;
    po.src = 'https://apis.google.com/js/plusone.js';
    var s = document.getElementsByTagName('script')[0]; s.parentNode.insertBefore(po, s);
  })();
</script>

Did they pledge that they would only track the google +1 clicking users? And not the non-clicking ones? If they didn't promise anything at the time, then they could have done anything they liked with the data.

Re:Don't be evil, indeed. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#42006729)

Did they pledge that they would only track the google +1 clicking users?

RTFA. The fake form that sets the cookie only gets submitted if you click the +1 button.

Re:Don't be evil, indeed. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#42005971)

I think they change this to "Do't be caught being a pack of c%nts who will invade your privacy at the drop of a hat"

Re:Don't be evil, indeed. (2)

Tough Love (215404) | about a year and a half ago | (#42006683)

$22.5 million is just "being bad" not "being evil".

Re:Don't be evil, indeed. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#42008251)

How much for "being naughty"?

Probably not worth it, but... (3, Funny)

dyingtolive (1393037) | about a year and a half ago | (#42005667)

... Google has effectively bought data on all fifteen Safari users out there for 22.5M. Hardly a good bargain, but I suppose that might help them optimize black turtleneck and Starbucks coffee advertisements, or something.

Re:Probably not worth it, but... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#42005995)

I could have sworn more than 15 people than that used iPhones and iPads.

Re:Probably not worth it, but... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#42006155)

Safari on iOS != Safari on OS X != Safari on Windows.

No where near enough (1)

thetoadwarrior (1268702) | about a year and a half ago | (#42006269)

Come on, that's pocket change for a bunch of tax avoiding cunts like Google. That's like fining someone 50 cents for speeding. Do you really think a lesson was taught?

Re:No where near enough (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#42007401)

does teaching imply learning?

facebook (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#42007213)

facebook did the same thing and no one cares

Seriously? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#42008193)

Who cares about the data they acquired? What's gonna happen...they get surfing habits that turn to statistics that help their products adapt to users in a more convenient way?

What horror.

Sue Apple? (1)

wurp (51446) | about a year and a half ago | (#42008485)

If Apple's browser promises to stop tracking, and Google ignores the 'stop tracking' indicator, and Apple says "that's fine, just pay us some $$$"...

Does that mean we should have a class action lawsuit against Apple for false advertising? If they're claiming that setting this flag means don't track me, then they go ahead and make a settlement with Google that *allows them to keep the data they got tracking me*, aren't they advertising a false sense of security?

Of course, I'm also peeved against Google. I am hoping :
a) this was unintentional
b) Google will issue (has issued?) a statement that they will delete the data despite not being required to

Re:Sue Apple? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#42009891)

Delete the data? Those wannabe neo-Soviets will keep it around for whatever they want to use it for in heir desperation to profile users. Even if compelled to delete it later, they likely have that data in their backups. See also the wi-fi snooping data from Street View.

Eh, Don't Worry. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#42009163)

It's cool, I'm sure they won't use it for anything unethical or against the best interests of the people whose information they collected.

not even a drop (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#42017093)

in the bucket that is google's bank account. they won't give a shit in the end

penalties like this should be based, in-part, on the size and/or market share of the offending company. in this case, the fine should be more like 22.5 billion, not 22.5 million.

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