Google Will Delete Incognito Tracking Records

  • Lawyers for a class-action settlement said in court papers filed on Monday that Google agreed to delete information it had gathered about people who used Chrome's "Incognito" secret browsing mode. Washington Post (LR: 2 CP: 5)
  • The agreement to delete billions of records aims to resolve a 2020 US class action lawsuit that accused the internet giant of gathering user data even in "private mode." Google supports the deal but challenges the $5B in damages as well as the claims. BBC News (LR: 3 CP: 5)
  • To determine whether to approve the settlement that would keep Google out of court in the class-action lawsuit, Judge Yvonne Gonzalez Rogers will hold a hearing on July 30. If accepted, Chrome users who suffered harm can sue Google separately. France 24
  • After the two parties announced their intention to resolve the dispute, Google updated its user policy clarifying that it still gathers data even when users search "Incognito" mode. BBC News (LR: 3 CP: 5)
  • To strengthen security, Google has also started testing a function that would automatically block third-party cookies, which track user behavior, for all Google Chrome users. The Hacker News

Narrative A:

  • Google has infringed on users' privacy and intentionally deceived consumers. The tech giant has gathered enormous amounts of data from users who believed the company would keep their data safe. After that, the company used this information to track web traffic and sell ads, which made them billions of dollars. Google should pay for damages, not just for lying but also for invading user privacy.

Narrative B:

  • Google has long thought that the complaint was without merit. However, the tech leader is happy to resolve the issue and move on. Deleting outdated technical data that has never been utilized for customization is not an issue. The data was never connected with any individual, thus no harm was done. As a result, Google will not pay any damages to any of the plaintiffs.

Nerd narrative:

  • There's a 50% chance that Google will be supplanted as the top search engine in the US by market share by July 2046, according to the Metaculus prediction community.
    METACULUS (LR: 3 CP: 3)

What about the people that they sold the data to?

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