People went into quite the stir, after WSJ published an article reporting that Google had been overriding Safari’s privacy settings to track user’s web browsing habits. Google used many forms of trickery to bypass Apple’s security settings, on both the desktop and iOS versions of Safari. Many users are questioning Google’s tactics.

The whole ordeal is now entering court, as Business Week reports that an Illinois man is suing Google Inc. in a Delaware court…

Google, the world’s biggest Internet-search company, has been dodging privacy settings in Safari, which serves as the primary Web browser on Apple’s iPhone and iPad products, lawyers for an Illinois man who uses the Safari browser said in a lawsuit filed today in federal court in Delaware.

The man’s attorney said that Google was willfully and knowingly breaking federal wiretap laws. Yesterday, lawmakers asked the FTC to probe Google over the Safari privacy scare.

Google’s code tricked Safari into thinking its web tracking was user-approved, however, that’s not the case. Quick to act, Google disabled the the tracking code after the WSJ’s report.

So why would Google even try to track users in the first place?

The tracking code helped Google understand its target market better, which allows them to better serve up ads through their Google Adsense program.

The Illinois man filed the suit on behalf of users “whose default privacy settings on the web browser software produced by Apple, known as Safari, were knowingly circumvented by Google.”

Do you think Google should be sued over this?

  • “The early bird gets the worm”. He wasn’t the one to find out about the violation, but decided to be the first to sue Google.

  • Anonymous


  • Yeap, of course it should be

  • Anonymous

    so if he wins we all get a payout?

    • You only get a pay out if it’s a class action lawsuit and you have specifically elected to take part in it.

  • Anonymous

    Yes. I hate google. They are the most corrupt of all the major corporations. They want to track every single thing you do online. For these reasons I will never use gmail, google plus, and even google search I only do on private browsing sessions. The only google account I have is for YouTube and it doesn’t contain any of my real info.

    • Poor you. If you’re going to hate, hate the carriers because they also can and actually do track every single move you make on the Internet, even when you are not online (messages, calls).
      But I’m guessing it’s hipster these days to simply hate and complain.

    • Yet Apple and their closed source systems, trying to create a monopoly, aren’t corrupt in that way ?! Yes what Google did was wrong, i agree, but don’t play the corrupt flag seeing as Apple themselves are just as bad, if jot worse, in different ways !

      • Take apples patent lawsuits for example.

      • Apple wouldn’t have to sue if Samsung didn’t copy everything they did.

        BTW, I don’t know if you realized this or not, but Apple DID invent the idea for swiping a button to unlock a touchscreen phone. The concept did not exist before the iPhone came to market.

        And instead of taking that idea and building upon it or improving it, Samsung chose to straight up copy it.

        So explain to me why they shouldn’t be sued?

      • A monopoly has nothing to do with stealing user’s data and breaking privacy laws.

        And if you think Apple has a monopoly you are crazy. They hardly make a dent in PC marketshare and for the most part, Android is more widespread than iOS.

        So basically, you have no argument. And Google was wrong for doing what they did.

  • The one that should (also) be sued is Apple because they are the ones that didn’t patch the loophole. If you’re walking around butt-naked and someone shoves a stick up your butthole, who is the guilty one?

    • Anonymous

      I enjoyed that, especially the last part, cheers!

    • That’s like saying “If a thief exploits a flaw in your safe, who is the guilty one.”. Obviously, the thief. No one would expect security to be completely infallible, nor would they hold someone responsible for hackers finding a loophole in it.

      • …the manufacturer of that safe is responsible for keeping the contents safe, but also for all the little holes in it that can be used to get to the contents. See what I mean?
        If I make a safe made of, lets say cardboard, disguise it and advertise it as unbreakable, but then when users get robbed get away with it? Or what if I make a safe, for some reason make the lock system work improperly, but sell it anyway?
        Who is at fault? (Both is the answer, the thief AND the safe manufacturer. That is my point: Apple is not being sued, but should be.) If this guy cares about his privacy, he should have sued both of them. But he obviously just wants to make Google look bad. That is why I do not support him.

      • Anonymous

        I see your point, but Apple does not guarantee their Safari software of being security-threat/tracking-free/etc. Do you also blame them for when you visit a phishing website and the browser didn’t alert you? Sure you could get upset and rightfully so, but you couldn’t sue Apple for that. I am pretty sure the bad press that Apple is getting for NOT fixing this flaw for so long will have the best benefits for us (the users) than a lawsuit would.

      • @hocus86 Well, the point of phishing is to fool the user, so I don’t see how software could do much about it (other than warn you *based on other’s reports*). I still don’t see how Google is the *only* one at fault here, since they only took what Apple gave them – a loophole.
        And yes, I completely agree with your last sentence.

      • if a thief broke into your home because of some security flaws… would you call up your insurance company and claim for loss items? if yes, then why are you doing it since it’s your fault in not securing your home properly.

    • If someone poked a stick up my butthole, I’d punch them on the nose!!

    • If someone poked a stick up my butthole, I’d punch them on the nose!!

    • That’s like saying that you should sue a store owner for having their doors unlocked when a robber came in and stole all their money from the cash register.

      I would never want to live in a world where you made the rules. Sounds like a shitty place to live.

      • I’ll just copy-paste what I said earlier…
        You won a million $ lottery and decided to store all the money in a bank safe. The next day a thief comes and steals all the money. Are you telling me that you would not at all blame the bank for not having enough security guards, or the safe manufacturer for not securing the safes well enough? Give me a break.

  • Anonymous

    Another example of lawyers borking the system for self enrichment. FWIW, I’m far from a Google fanboy. From my perspective,the free market took care of this without lawsuits or governmental action required.

  • Javier Gore

    The Suing Industry. Another man who wants a piece of the cake.