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Tag Archives for " Google "

Google faces $5 billion lawsuit in U.S. for tracking ‘private’ internet use

Google was sued on Tuesday in a proposed class action accusing the internet search company of illegally invading the privacy of millions of users by pervasively tracking their internet use through browsers set in “private” mode.

The lawsuit seeks at least $5 billion, accusing the Alphabet Inc unit of surreptitiously collecting information about what people view online and where they browse, despite their using what Google calls Incognito mode.

Source: Google faces $5 billion lawsuit in U.S. for tracking ‘private’ internet use – Reuters

Google’s federated analytics method could analyze end user data without invading privacy

Google’s federated analytics techniques, which power features like Now Playing, could be used to analyze end user data without invading privacy.

It works by running local computations over a device’s data and making only the aggregated results — not the data from the particular device — available to authorized engineers.

Source: Google’s federated analytics method could analyze end user data without invading privacy | VentureBeat

Chrome to have more intuitive privacy and security controls

Google have started rolling out new tools and a redesign of Chrome’s privacy and security settings on desktop, to help you control your safety on the web.

With new design it will be easier to:

  • manage cookies,
  • find the most sensitive website permissions in Site Settings,
  • control what data is stored in Google Account and made available across all your devices,
  • clear browsing data as “Clear browsing data” option moved to top of Privacy & Security section.

With our new safety check in settings, you can quickly confirm the safety of your experience in Chrome. Enhanced Safe Browsing gives you more proactive and tailored protections from phishing, malware and other web-based threats. If you’re signed in to Chrome, then Chrome and other Google apps you use (Gmail, Drive, etc.) will further protect you based on a holistic view of threats you encounter on the web and attacks against your Google Account.

Google is also launching Secure DNS, a feature designed to improve your security and privacy while browsing the web.

Source: More intuitive privacy and security controls in Chrome

Google is auditioning candidates to succeed the third-party cookie

Google wants other ad exchanges and demand-side platforms to run tests to see whether its proposals to replace third-party cookies will work in actual ad auctions.

Google is ready to test some of its recently announced “Privacy Sandbox” proposals with other exchanges and demand-side platforms to see how its plans to replace third-party cookies with less data-invasive solutions will actually work within advertising auctions. The move marks yet another step in Google’s two-year countdown towards its intention to end support for third-party cookies in Chrome.

Source: Google is auditioning candidates to succeed the third-party cookie – Digiday

Health officials think Apple and Google virus-tracking apps will be useless

Apple and Google’s last month announced of a joint effort to track the coronavirus. But as the tech giants have revealed more details, officials now say the software will be of little use.

The tension over virus-tracking apps reflects a major power imbalance between the tech giants and state and local health officials, who argue that Apple and Google’s technical decisions have undermined their response to a global health emergency. It also highlights the tech giants’ ability to exert unfettered control over how billions of smartphones work.

Source: Apple and Google clash with health officials over virus-tracking apps – The Washington Post

Multi-part Android spyware lurked on Google Play Store for 4 years, posing as a bunch of legit-looking apps

A newly uncovered strain of Android spyware lurked on the Google Play Store disguised as cryptocurrency wallet Coinbase, among other things, for up to four years, according to a new report by Bitdefender.

The malware, named Mandrake by the threat intelligence agency, featured a three-part structure that allowed its operators to evade detection by routine Google scanning.

Beginning with an innocuous-looking dropper hosted on the Google Play store, masquerading as one of a number of legitimate apps, Mandrake allowed its Russian operators to snoop on virtually everything unsuspecting targets did on their mobile phone.

Source: Multi-part Android spyware lurked on Google Play Store for 4 years, posing as a bunch of legit-looking apps • The Register

Google’s Coronavirus Test Sites May Be Scooping Up People’s Sensitive Information

In the two months since Verily rolled out the testing sites in California, advocates and lawmakers have been warning the Alphabet subsidiary may not be in compliance with California’s strict new privacy law that requires companies to give detailed, clear information to consumers on what kind of information it’s collecting.

Mary Stone Ross, an Oakland-based consumer privacy expert, said Verily is not complying with the letter of the law because it does not list on its website every category of personal information it collects from users, referencing the exact language used in the law.

More broadly problematic is the fact that there seems to be little oversight of the company. For example, the California privacy law passed in January is not going to be fully enforced until July.

Source: Google’s Coronavirus Test Sites May Be Scooping Up People’s Sensitive Information – VICE

Austrian citizen files GDPR legal complaint against Google over Android Advertising ID

Privacy pressure group Noyb has filed a legal complaint against Google on behalf of an Austrian citizen, claiming the Android Advertising ID on every Android device is “personal data” as defined by the EU’s GDPR and that this data is illegally processed.

The complaint against Google, which was filed with the Austrian Data Protection Authority, is based on the claim that Google’s Android operating system generates the advertising ID without user choice as required by GDPR.

Source: Stop tracking me, Google: Austrian citizen files GDPR legal complaint over Android Advertising ID • The Register

Google Play has been spreading advanced Android malware for years

Hackers have been using Google Play for years to distribute an unusually advanced backdoor capable of stealing a wide range of sensitive data, researchers said.

Researchers from security firm Kaspersky Lab have recovered at least eight Google Play apps that date back to 2018, a Kaspersky Lab representative said, but based on archive searches and other methods, the researchers believe malicious apps from the same advanced group seeded Google’s official market since at least 2016.

Source: Google Play has been spreading advanced Android malware for years | Ars Technica

UK ICO Releases Its Opinion on Apple and Google Partnership to Build COVID-19 Contact Tracing Technology

Elizabeth Denham, the UK Information Commissioner, has released an opinion in response to the joint effort announced by Apple Inc. and Google LLC to enable the use of Bluetooth technology to help governments and health agencies reduce the spread of COVID-19 by building contact-tracing technology into iOS and Android smartphones.

Opinion concludes that the “Contact Tracing Framework” (CTF) being developed supports data protection principles. The approach taken by the Information Commissioner in her opinion highlights the pragmatic leadership demonstrated by the Information Commissioner’s Office (ICO) in enabling organizations to process personal data for the purposes of combatting COVID-19.

Source: UK ICO Releases Its Opinion on Apple and Google Partnership to Build COVID-19 Contact Tracing Technology

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