ACLU Lens: Google's New Privacy Policy

by Sabrina I. Pacifici on January 25, 2012

ACLU: “Yesterday evening, Google announced a new privacy policy effective March 1. The new policy is consistent across the vast majority of Google products…the new privacy policy makes clear that Google will, for the first time, combine the personal data you share with any one of its products or sites across almost all of its products and sites (everything but Google Chrome, Google Books, and Google Wallet) in order to obtain a more comprehensive picture of you. And there’s no opting out. This comes on the heels of Google’s new Search, plus Your World, a feature combining search results from the public web with private information and photos you have shared (or that have been shared with you) through Google+ or Picasa…The head of Google’s privacy for product and engineering explained on Google’s blog that integrating an individual’s profiles across Google’s sites will help Google “figure[e] out what you really mean when you type in Apple, Jaguar or Pink,” provide more relevant ads, “provide reminders that you’re going to be late for a meeting based on your location, your calendar and an understanding of what the traffic is like that day” (thanks, Mom), and “ensure that our spelling suggestions, even for your friends’ names, are accurate…this data aggregation is not just about what ads you see, but as ACLU of Massachusetts describes, it creates an even larger treasure chest of personal information ripe for government picking.”

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