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Rediff.com  » Business » Google may pay $22.5 mn for bypassing privacy settings

Google may pay $22.5 mn for bypassing privacy settings

July 10, 2012 15:08 IST

GoogleInternet giant Google is closing on a deal to pay $22.5 million as settlement charges related to its bypassing of the privacy settings of millions of Apple users, a media report said.

"Google Inc is close to a deal to pay $22.5 million to settle charges related to its surreptitious bypassing of the privacy settings of millions of Apple Inc users," The Wall Street Journal reported citing a source.

According to the daily, the fine is expected to be the largest penalty ever levied on a single company by the US Federal Trade Commission.

The charges involve Google's use of special computer code to trick Apple's Safari Web-browsing software into letting it monitor users that had blocked such tracking.

The practices which were reported by the Journal earlier this year led the Internet giant to disable the code.

The report said, citing Google's statement, that it had made changes to the 2009 centre page under focus by FTC and taken steps to remove the ad cookies.

An FTC spokeswoman declined to comment, the daily said.

The report said that FTC and Google have reached a proposed settlement and agreed on a fine.

"The settlement is awaiting approval by FTC commissioners and could still be altered before it becomes public," the daily added.

Moreover, the report noted that Google also faces actions from other governments.

"Google's bypassing of Apple privacy settings is still under investigation in the European Union as part of a wide-ranging examination of whether Google's new privacy policy complies with Europe's strict data-policy regulations," the daily added.

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