TECH BYTE: Google Lawsuit Settlement

CHATTANOOGA, Tenn. (WDEF) — Google has recently agreed to a big lawsuit settlement.

The search engine is paying nearly $400 million to 40 states – the third highest privacy settlement in U.S. history.

Google is charged with misleading users into thinking their location tracking was turned off, even though their information was still being collected.

Even when their Location History setting was “off,” the Web & App Activity setting defaulted to “on” during setup.

Most people didn’t even know that existed.

The attorneys general found that Google violated consumer protection laws by misleading consumers as far back as 2014. Possibly longer than that.

As part of the settlement, Google has to be more transparent with users, which officials say the tech company should’ve already been doing.

Google will soon have to show more information to users whenever they turn a location-related account setting “on” or “off.”

The search engine will also have to make it impossible for users to avoid key information about location tracking.

Google will even need to give users detailed information about the types of location data it collects, and how it’s used at an enhanced “Location Technologies” webpage.

Google says it’s working to make these corrections and will be more transparent with users starting next year.

Categories: Local News, Tech Byte, Technology