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Google set to resolve $5 Billion privacy lawsuit

Image source: PhotoMIX Company/Pexels
Image source: PhotoMIX Company/Pexels
The lawsuit argues that millions of users who believed they were browsing anonymously had their internet activity covertly monitored by Google.

A potentially revealing court hearing has been avoided as Alphabet Inc.'s Google unit has tentatively settled allegations of misappropriating user data. $5 billion in damages were initially sought in the lawsuit; the specifics of the settlement were not made public. 

A trial in the proposed class action was slated for February 5, 2024, but U.S. District Judge Yvonne Gonzalez Rogers in Oakland, California, postponed it on Thursday after Google and consumer advocates announced they had reached a preliminary deal.

Court filings show that the search engine giant consented to settle allegations that, in violation of privacy assurances, it monitored users' online activities while they were surfing in what they thought to be an undercover mode. Customers complained that Google was following them even while they were using Chrome's purportedly hidden "Incognito" mode, which raised concerns about the integrity of online privacy. The company made several unsuccessful attempts to have the matter dismissed by the court.

The settlement's terms, negotiated through a private mediation procedure, will be made public by the end of February 2024 when it is submitted for court approval.

The Google Pixel 8, hailing from the search giant's domain, offers users seamless integration with a plethora of Google products and services. Currently, the smartphone is accessible on Amazon with a 21% discount, priced at $549.


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Robert Gelo, 2023-12-29 (Update: 2023-12-29)