Google wants to make your life (and its info-gathering) easier
Google loves you. Google wants to be your friend and make your life so much simpler. As part of all that guff, it’s made some widespread changes to its big, fat, complicated privacy policies. Now you’ll be able to have ‘a better, more intuitive Google experience’ as most of its separate privacy policies have been merged into one big, fat, less complicated one. Isn’t that great?
Of course it means that, if you’ve got a Google account, all of your personal info will be spread across almost all of Google’s services, whether you use them or not
Speaking to TechRadar, Sophos security expert Graham Cluely said:
“(It) means Google will be able to get a fuller picture of you. For instance, it will be able to share what it knows about you from your use of Gmail, with what it knows about what videos you have watched on YouTube, what locations you've looked up on Google Maps, and what you've searched for on the net.”
“As a result of this change, the potential value of the data Google stores about you has grown enormously. And, of course, the more Google knows about you the easier it will be to target you with advertising. Google has been dragged over the coals by privacy regulators in the past, and chances are that these changes will also be scrutinized by the powers that be.”
Ah yes, regulators. It seems that the Information Commissioner’s Office is already taking a close look at this latest development, and a spokesdude told ZDNet:
“While it can prove useful to some service users, it is important that technology companies, such as Google, are aware of the privacy concerns that exist when behavioural advertising is used to target particular content at individuals," said the ICO. "Failure to inform users about changes may not only lead to a loss of trust in the company, but could also mean that they are failing to comply with the requirements of the Data Protection Act.”