Google face record US fine for cookie crimes

September 2012



Google will pay a record $22.5 million civil penalty to settle US Federal Trade Commission (FTC) charges that it lied to users of Apple’s Safari Internet browser when it told them it would not place tracking “cookies” or serve targeted ads to those users. The actions violating an earlier privacy settlement between the company and the FTC, struck last October. According to the FTC’s complaint, Google specifically told Safari users that the browser was set by default to block third-party cookies, and would continue to do so as long as they didn’t change their settings. In addition to the penalty, Google also must disable all the tracking cookies it had said it would not place on consumers’ computers. “The record-setting penalty in this matter sends a clear message to all companies under an FTC privacy order,” said Jon Leibowitz, chairman of the FTC. “No matter how big or small, all companies must abide by FTC orders against them and keep their privacy promises to consumers, or they will end up paying many times what it would have cost to comply in the first place.” Google have not admitted any wrongdoing.

No Comments

Comments are closed.