By |16 Sep 2023 at 10:43 PM
California and Google

California and Google: Google will pay California $93 million to resolve a lawsuit accusing the search engine company of misleading consumers about its location monitoring practices.

The settlement announced by California Attorney General Rob Bonta on Thursday resolves allegations that the Alphabet Inc (GOOGL.O) subsidiary misled individuals into believing they retained control over how Google collected and used their personal information.

Google, according to California, was able to “profile” users and target them with ads even if they turned off their “Location History” setting, and it misled users about their ability to block unwanted ads.

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The agreement requires Google to disclose more information about how it tracks people’s locations and what it does with the data it obtains, among other measures designed to protect user privacy.

“Google told its users that it would stop tracking their location once they opted out, but continued to do so for its own commercial gain,” Bonta explained. “That’s unacceptable.”

In settling, the Mountain View, California-based company did not acknowledge liability.

In the first half of 2023, Google generated $110.9 billion in advertising revenue, accounting for 81% of its total revenue of $137.7 billion.

In November of 2017, Google agreed to pay $391,500,000 to settle similar claims by forty U.S. states.

Several states, including California, decided to sue Google independently. Additionally, Arizona and Washington have resolved.

In an email sent on Thursday, a Google representative referred to a blog post discussing the multistate settlement and stated that the issue involved “outdated product policies that we changed years ago.”