Google Fails to Block UK Court Case Over Web Browser Tracking
Published on: 16th Jan 2014
Google has failed in an attempt to prevent a court case in the UK that will decide if the company illegally tracked its users.
The company had tried to argue that the case should be heard in the USA where it is based, but the court dismissed that, ruling that the people affected are based in the UK and the UK is where the case should be heard.
The case relates to an issue where Google is accused of bypassing user preferences in the Safari web browser and was able to track users behaviour without their permission.
Through its DoubleClick advertising platform, Google sets third-party cookies that enable it to gather information about its users. Apple's Safari Web browser is set by default to block third-party cookies, including cookies set by DoubleClick to track a consumer's browsing history. Between June 2011 and February 2012, Google altered its DoubleClick coding to circumvent those default privacy settings on Safari, without consumers' knowledge or consent, enabling it to put DoubleClick cookies on consumers' Safari Web browsers.
Google disabled this coding method in February 2012 after the practice was widely reported on the Internet and in the media.
Google said it would go the UK's Court of Appeal to see if it could challenge the ruling.
The company has already agreed to pay fines totaling USD39.5 million last year in the USA to settle similar claims.