FTC Hits Google With $22.5 Million Fine Over Safari Tracking?
The Federal Trade Commission announced today that Google has agreed to pay $22.5 million to settle charges that it misrepresented how users of Apple's Safari browser were having their Internet activity tracked.
According to the complaint, Google placed advertising cookies on the computers of Safari users who visited sites within Google's DoubleClick advertising network. Google, however, had wrongly told Safari users they would be opted out of such tracking thanks to Safari's default settings. The search giant also said it was a member of the Network Advertising Initiative, which requires firms to disclose their data collection and use practices.
Google's actions, the FTC said, did not violate U.S. law, but they did violate a March 2011 deal over Google's Buzz program that required Google to implement privacy safeguards, submit to regular audits, and banned it from future privacy misrepresentations. The deal was finalized in October.
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