Google’s “Privacy Rap Sheet”

Google capital G logoWe see that Google is being sued by this country and that for privacy violations as a seemingly ongoing basis these days. But did you know that this seeming disregard for privacy by Google isn’t just a recent occurrence? I don’t have anything against Google. However, their record…or “privacy rap sheet” seems to speak for itself.

Updated 3-12-2013

YEAR                     DESCRIPTION OF OFFENSE

2013                          38 State AGs fined Google $7m for mass unauthorized collection of private WiFi data        http://tinyurl.com/b6tg8na

2013                         Google Glass prompts first usage ban: Seattle bar to prevent recording private conversations http://tinyurl.com/aj8oog2

2013                         Google reversed some UK homeowner requested opt-outs from Street View in latest updates http://tinyurl.com/bf5snrq

2013                         EU found Google non-compliant with CNIL’s privacy investigation; plans sanctions this summer http://tinyurl.com/c65yxdm

2013                        Android security flaw allowed the bypass of a major Google security sign-in flaw for 7 months http://tinyurl.com/bbty7ln

2013                       Google Play found to share users’ names/emails with developers without users’ permission http://tinyurl.com/b7a75g3

2013                       F-Secure study: Android accounted for 96% of mobile malware attacks in 4Q12 http://tinyurl.com/bcf9hsb

2013                       Fragmentation leaves Android phones vulnerable to hackers & “smishing” consumer fraud http://tinyurl.com/b4ytsku

2012                       Google maps for iPhone default for user tracking violated EU Data Protection Law per Germany http://tinyurl.com/adl4m2v

2012                       Android app verification service misses 85% of sideloaded malware per NCSU study http://tinyurl.com/aq858s8

2012                       Google Now’s pedometer card tracks user walking/biking distances by default without consent http://tinyurl.com/a6rcqly

2012                       Scientists test 13k Android Apps find 8% fail to protect bank and social media log-ins http://tinyurl.com/9c5to42

2012                      US FTC fines Google record $22.5m for deception/bypassing Safari browser privacy settings http://tinyurl.com/9djunwj

2012                      FBI Internet Crime Center warns of malware targeting Android phone operating system http://tinyurl.com/9lj4u8q

2012                     Gmail users file class action accusing Google of violating California’s Invasion of Privacy Act http://tinyurl.com/97r9ens

2012                    Google found more Australia Street View data that it did not destroy but had promised to destroy http://tinyurl.com/9zl5m73

2012                   Google did not destroy all UK Street View data that it assured UK govt. it had destroyed http://tinyurl.com/c72m65r

2012                   Google’s UK privacy manager conflicted as he oversaw UK privacy investigation of Street View http://tinyurl.com/6mwbelk

2012                   Hacking Experts demonstrated new ways to attack and take over Android phones http://tinyurl.com/ces79n4

2012                   Lookout report found Android toll-fraud malware creeps into cellphone bills http://tinyurl.com/bv54nzy

2012                  Google’s automated screening process missed app uploads of trojan malware for weeks http://tinyurl.com/bn543px

2012                  US FCC Street View WiSpy probe disproved Google story it was a rogue engineer’s mistake http://politico.pro/McNbyg

2012                  Android Apps found to share personal data with advertisers without users’ knowledge http://bit.ly/waUjb6

2012                  By design Android app developers don’t need user’s permission to

access users’ photos http://bit.ly/KOuGfs

2012                  US FCC fines Google $25k for impeding/delaying its Street View wiretapping probe http://bit.ly/IC1y8x

2012                 Google Drive terms of service grant Google broad rights to users’ private info in cloud http://bit.ly/Il0LNk

2012                Stanford researcher found Google bypassed users’ privacy protections on Apples’s browser http://on.wsj.com/ytg5EB

2012               Google Wallet shut down for week because users’ PIN to access money wasn’t private http://bit.ly/AzksAM

2012               Google rejected EU request to delay new privacy policy to see if it complied with EU law http://bit.ly/vZgiQD

2012               Google refuses to meet with 36 US Attorneys General about objections to new privacy policy http://on.wsj.com/wxlDCB

2012               Google introduces new privacy policy without opt-out required by FTC enforcement decree http://bit.ly/IPa9EH

2012               EPIC asks US FTC to probe if “Search Plus Your World” violates FTC enforcement decree http://bit.ly/AeE1kv

2011               Google fails to fulfill its LAPD contract to ensure private/secure Gmail for law enforcement http://bit.ly/qbGOFN

2011              Chinese hackers accessed private Gmail accounts of US Cabinet and Defense Dept. officials http://wapo.st/iVnEVq

2011              Android defaults set to collect & implement network passwords without user’s permission http://tek.io/k42Kr9

2011              Google abused user privacy by knowingly geo-targeting them with ads to buy illegal drugs http://1.usa.gov/qrjmxO

2011             French privacy authority fines Google $144k for Street View privacy invasion without consent http://tinyurl.com/adp5afp

2011            Android tracks users’ movements thousands of times a day without the user’s knowledge http://on.wsj.com/gDfmEV

2011            Android’s lax security found to enable hackers easy access to users private information http://bit.ly/trp25m

2011            Google TV prevented users from installing privacy/security software for protection http://bit.ly/bvtbk0

2011           Google settled with US FTC over charges of Google-Buzz deceptive privacy practices http://1.usa.gov/hR4sgV

2011          Only Google made all of Wikileaks’ stolen private/secret cables publicly searchable http://reut.rs/ieeUFO

2011          Android’s no-curation-policy means no privacy/security by design for users private info http://bit.ly/nxPnH7

2011          Google enabled public download of 35 million personal profiles, adding to identity theft risk http://bit.ly/kMxUJN

2011          US DOJ catches Google misrepresenting it had privacy/security certifications it did not have http://bit.ly/i4AJHs

2011          “Doodle4Google” art contest sign-up required children to provide partial social security #s http://bit.ly/f3cD2O

2010         Google Street View’s unauthorized recording of private WiFi communications in 33 nations http://bit.ly/aOyj98

2010         Chinese hackers stole Google’s entire password security/privacy software system http://nyti.ms/JzMOHs

2010         Google engineer caught stalking underage teens and spying on their private chats/emails http://gaw.kr/bVrNQ3

2009         Google depends on others to discover Google’s privacy/security vulnerabilities http://bit.ly/N4mdbk

2009         Google’s centralization of all information creates “single-point-of-failure” for privacy/security http://amzn.to/MgmSr3

2009         Librarians opposed Google Book Settlement because it had no privacy protections http://bit.ly/JZQfH

2008         Google opposed posting its privacy policy on its homepage as required by California law http://bit.ly/LSm19A

2007         Privacy International ranked Google worst in the world for privacy for “hostility to privacy” http://bit.ly/KybXGp

2007         Google Street View raised privacy concerns with public photos of private home interiors http://nyti.ms/L3BxjE

2007         Google exposed 2,000 college students social security #s & personal info in search results http://bit.ly/LPEzrn

2007         Google Docs’s terms of service claims perpetual rights to users’ private material http://zd.net/iumtqH

2007         Privacy watchdogs opposed Google-DoubleClick merger on privacy grounds http://bit.ly/JTmFJJ

2006         Poll of Google users shows that they incorrectly believe search is private/not identifiable http://bit.ly/JTmFJJ

2006         Google publicly displayed a live feed of everyone’s private search terms in its lobby http://scoble.it/8aIX37

2005         Google Earth publicly exposed aerial views of White House roof endangering its security http://bit.ly/JZj7kl

2004         Google chooses an “all-eggs-in-one-basket” search database design called “Big Table” http://bit.ly/EB3J

2004         Thirty-one privacy groups oppose Gmail scanning emails to target advertising personally http://bit.ly/NpI4HW

2004         Google desktop function exposed as big spyware risk for users compromising privacy http://bit.ly/KRZ3BG

2002         GoogleWatch predicts: “Google is a privacy time bomb/a privacy disaster waiting to happen” http://bit.ly/WiKv

Source: Scott Cleland: President Precursor LLC; Publisher: GoogleMonitor.com & Googleopoly.net

Author: “Search & Destroy: Why You Can’t Trust Google Inc.” SearchAndDestroyBook.com

Also see: “Google’s Rap Sheet” at Googleopoly.net (for antitrust, criminal & infringement offenses)

Be very careful…it’s dangerous out there.

Please comment on this article; we all learn from each other when our views and opinions are shared.

I hope you found this article of interest.  If you enter your email address in the Email Subscriptions box on the right column of this page, I’ll send you an email when a new article is posted.  I don’t share your email address with anyone…no one; I hate spam too.  Please share my site with your friends and family.  Thanks.

Remember, personal computing is a blast…keep it safe, productive and enjoyable.

Best regards,

Paul

paulsinternetsecurity(at)yahoo.com

I’m also on Twitter, @PaulsInternet.

Images courtesy of FreeDigitalPhotos.net and FreeByte.com

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