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International

You don’t need CIA, MI6, Mossad, or ISI When Google is watching you: Austrian activist accuses Google of tracking users

Austrian privacy activist named Max Schrems has accused Google in France of infringing privacy right of Android users by tracking them sans consent.

A report published in Financial Times said Android phones generate unique advertising codes, similar to Apple’s Identifier for Advertisers (IDFA), that allow Google and third parties to track users’ browsing behavior to better target them with advertising.

A complaint was launched by Schrems which says that in creating and storing these codes without first obtaining explicit permission from users, Google was engaging in “illegal operations” that violate EU privacy laws.

Schrems urged France’s data privacy regulator to launch a probe into Google’s tracking practices and to force the company to comply with privacy rules.

A privacy lawyer, Stefano Rossetti, at Noyb – which is a campaign group by Schrems working for the cause- said,

“Through these hidden identifiers on your phone, Google and third parties can track users without their consent.”

“It is like having powder on your hands and feet, leaving a trace of everything you do on your phone — from whether you swiped right or left to the song you downloaded,” the lawyer added.

The report said, Google did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

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