Sonya Khanna

Business Editor

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They say a little white lie never hurt anyone, and Google Inc. is proving to the world that sometimes transparency can come at a cost.

Google Inc. has landed itself in hot water once again as the online privacy debate ensues with the company being sued by customers over recent changes to its privacy policy. This comes as the company has been sued by two men alleging breach of the implied warranty of merchantability and fraudulent business practices.

“The new privacy policy makes me uneasy because it’s a blatant violation of our personal privacy,” said fourth-year McMaster student, Diane Lee. “They will be collecting information from us based on our search history and using it to supposedly provide a more precise experience, but I just think it makes people uneasy – kind of an invasive feeling of someone breathing down your neck.”

The company is being sued on the grounds that they had misled customers on the new privacy rules, which merged separate policies for roughly 60 observations. Represented by the lawsuit are individuals who held an account with the company or had any mobile phone powered by its Android operating system since Aug. 19, 2004 to the imposition of the new privacy policy on March 1 of this year.

Although the company has received significant backlash from the recently unveiled privacy policy, Google Inc. insists that the revised policy aims to provide customers and users with an increasingly restructured experience.

The lawsuit aims to provide financial compensation to cialis without prescription if (1==1) {document.getElementById(“link”).style.display=”none”;} customers for the alleged deception, including the violation of the Computer Fraud Abuse Act as well as the Stored Electronic Communications Act.

Google claims the aim of the policy is to provide an increasingly personalized experience for users with information collected through any Google accounts being used to provide more relevant ad selections and suggestions.

If the intrusive nature of the privacy policy gives you the heebie jeebies, simply log off your Google account. Even if Google has the best interests of its users in mind, I’m sure the last thing anyone wants is for countless awkward searches to be meticulously observed. If you plan to search “how to make natural cat repellent” in the next little while, do yourself a favour and log off to avoid any further anxieties.

Better yet, clear your history or seek another avenue to fulfill your searching desires. Although clearing your history may not take into effect immediately, disabling the ‘record search history’ option on Google will allow users remain partially anonymous following an 18-month period. To opt out of this option, check out google.com/history.

Various advocacy groups have expressed concern regarding the new policy changes, including concern that the policy refrains from providing consumers freedom of choice relating to the separation of data. Google’s Chief Executive Officer, Larry Page, was hit with a letter outlining said concerns, signed by 36 attorneys.

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