Google to Settle ‘Incognito’ Lawsuit

In a landmark legal settlement, Google has agreed to destroy billions of data records, addressing allegations of misleading consumers about their privacy while using “incognito” mode for web browsing.

Revealed in a San Francisco federal court filing, this move comes as a resolution to a lawsuit challenging Google’s tracking practices, even when users sought privacy through incognito browsing.

The Settlement Details

The disclosed settlement outlines Google’s commitment to “delete and/or remediate billions of data records” related to private browsing activities.

Valued at over $5 billion, the agreement is a response to accusations from a 2020 lawsuit, which argued that Google falsely assured users of non-tracking in incognito mode.

Furthermore, the settlement mandates changes to incognito mode, enabling users to automatically block third-party cookies by default for the next five years.

A Step Towards Transparency

Described as a historic move for tech industry accountability, the settlement demands Google’s honesty about data collection and usage.

“This settlement is an historic step in requiring dominant technology companies to be honest in their representations to users about how the companies collect and employ user data, and to delete and remediate data collected,” the legal document states.

It represents a significant stride towards enhancing privacy rights on the internet, ensuring that Google, the world’s leading data collector, faces real accountability and transparency.

Although the settlement was initially agreed upon in December, the recent court filing sheds light on the specifics of the agreement between Google and the plaintiffs, represented by attorney David Boies of Boies Schiller Flexner, among others.

As of now, neither Google nor Boies Schiller Flexner has responded to requests for comment on the matter.

With information from CBS News

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