Google has failed to get a case dismissed accusing the company of tracking users in Incognito mode. The company is being accused of tracking users using their tracking tools such as Google Analytics, Google Ad Manager, website plug-ins, despite knowing they did not want to be tracked.
“Google tracks and collects consumer browsing history and other web activity data no matter what safeguards consumers undertake to protect their data privacy,” read the original class-action lawsuit.
“The court concludes that Google did not notify users that Google engages in the alleged data collection while the user is in private browsing mode,” U.S. District Judge Lucy Koh in San Jose, California, agreed in her ruling.
Google denied that users were not informed, saying: “Google also makes clear that ‘Incognito’ does not mean ‘invisible,’ and that the user’s activity during that session may be visible to websites they visit, and any third-party analytics or ads services the visited websites use.”
“Google knows who your friends are, what your hobbies are, what you like to eat, what movies you watch, where and when you like to shop, what your favourite vacation destinations are, what your favourite colour is, and even the most intimate and potentially embarrassing things you browse on the internet — regardless of whether you follow Google’s advice to keep your activities ‘private,’” said the 3 complainants who initiated the class-action lawsuit in June last year.
The case will now proceed to trial in U.S. District Court, Northern District of California.