Is privacy on the internet of utmost concern to you?
Who do you trust – big giants like Google, Facebook, Apple right?
BUT what if these companies only betray your trust and use your private information to make money off it?
A new consumer group campaign called “Google You Owe Us” is launching a class-action suit against the search giant Google for unlawfully getting access to personal data without permission on iPhones.
YouOweUs team are taking Google to court because they claim Google allegedly got illegal access to iPhone browser histories in 2011 and 2012.
Googled used what is termed as “Safari Workaround” that allowed Google’s algorithms to get access to browser history on iPhone default browser, Safari.
What is the YouOweUs Google claim about?
The YouOweUs campaign group alleges Google breached data protection laws in the UK and they want to show world’s biggest companies are not above the law.
Led by Richard Lloyd, a former Director at Which?, the team is filing a representative action against Google for violating data protection rights.
Here’s a video to walk you through the claims made under Google YouOweUs class action.
Who is affected?
If you lived in the UK between 01 Jun 2011 and 15 Feb 2012 and owned an iPhone using a Safari browser, you could be affected.
That’s approximately 5.4 million iPhone users.
If you owned iPhone 4 or iPhone 4s launched around that period, you could be affected by this “Safari Workaround.”
Here are the criteria set out by YouOweUs:
a) Were you at any time between 1 June 2011 and 15 February 2012 present in England and Wales and whilst present:
- Did you have an Apple ID?
- Did you own or were you in lawful possession of an iPhone?
- Did you use the Safari browser to access the internet?
- Did you keep the default security settings in the Safari browser?
- Did you not opt-out of tracking and collation via Google’s Ads preference Manager?
b) Were you resident in England and Wales on 31 May 2017?
What should you do now to be eligible for the Google You Owe Us claim?
At the moment, nothing.
If you were affected, you are currently a part of the claim.
The claim is being filed on behalf of the millions of Brits affected so you don’t need to pay any fees or hire any lawyers.
If the case is successful, the members of the claimant class will be asked to register in order to receive the money they are owed.
Instructions you need to follow to claim will be available on Google You Owe Us website and social handles.
This is a representative action (type of collective action) in which the representative claimant logs a claim on behalf of a group of people with shared grievance or interest.
If you were affected but do not wish to be a part of this claim, you can visit the YouOweUs website to fill a form and opt-out of the representative action.
How much could I receive, if the claim is successful?
It is too early to put an exact figure to how much you might be paid. The final figure will have to be decided by the courts if the claim is successful.
But, the YouOweUs team estimates each affected consumer could be owed several hundred pounds by Google for breaching data protection laws.
With all legal challenges, there’s no guarantee this claim will succeed, and this is a relatively untested legal area. So, for now, you have to wait and watch.
I will keep this page updated with the latest developments around Google You Owe Us campaign – I recommend you bookmark this page now!
Also, you can follow the YouOweUs Facebook page and Twitter handles for the latest updates on the campaign.
If you know someone else who had an iPhone in 2011-12, spread the word and let them know that they may be part of the claim.