Google Faces Fresh New Lawsuit Over Gmail Scanning Saga

/ 11 years ago

Gmail Compose

The Herald Sun reports that Google is facing another lawsuit because of the way it scans the content of emails received by its Gmail users. Google does this so that it may more effectively calculate and target which advertisements to place in that person’s inbox and around that person’s Google account & services.

The plaintiffs claim that Google “unlawfully opens up, reads, and acquires the content of people’s private email messages” in violation of California’s privacy laws and even federal wire-tapping laws. Google on the other hand believes that “all users of email must necessarily expect that their emails will be subject to automated processing.” The judge for case Lucy Koh has indicated that she could terminate the case or schedule a fully fledged trial for it next year. There’s no telling which way the decision might go.

Google claims its privacy policy informs users that the Gmail service scans all incoming emails but Judge Koh questioned this stating “Why wouldn’t you just say ‘the content of your emails?'” when discussing the clarity of the privacy policy. Google believes that because the process is fully automated and no human actually reads your emails then no laws are being broken.

Image courtesy of Google

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