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Google hit by privateness criticism in EU for inserting adverts in Gmail

Google hit by privateness criticism in EU for inserting adverts in Gmail


London, Aug 24 (IANS) Google on Wednesday was hit by a recent privateness criticism in Europe, this time for allegedly inserting adverts in Gmail with out customers’ consent.

Privacy advocacy group VYOB filed the criticism with France’s knowledge safety watchdog, the CNIL.

The criticism stated that within the “Promotions” tab of the mailbox (each within the cellular model of Gmail and within the net model), the customers obtain, amongst different issues, promoting emails for which they’ve given their consent.

Among these emails, the customers additionally obtain promoting emails of one other sort referred to as Gmail promoting emails.

“These Gmail promoting emails have solely two traits that distinguish them from different emails. First, they embody the phrase ‘Ad’ in inexperienced letters on the left-hand aspect, beneath the topic line of the e-mail. Second, they don’t embody a date,” learn the criticism.

The criticism alleged that Gmail customers didn’t give consent to being spammed with Google’s adverts.

“The complainants weren’t requested to consent to those promoting emails being despatched to them after they signed up for Gmail and even afterwards,” it stated.

Google was but to react to the privateness criticism filed beneath the European Union’s ePrivacy Directive guidelines.

When the customers click on on the Gmail promoting emails, they don’t seem to be redirected to an exterior web site and so they see the total commercial within the type of an e-mail.

“Therefore, the Gmail promoting emails are even nearer to ‘conventional’ emails,” stated the criticism.

In addition, the Gmail promoting emails are displayed within the ‘Promotions’ tab within the inbox.

“This additional confuses customers: they typically anticipate to obtain promoting emails to which they’ve subscribed, and can subsequently legitimately assume that the Google promoting emails at hand on this criticism are additionally promotional emails to which they’ve subscribed,” it alleged.

Gmail affords automated filtering of unsolicited emails the place unsolicited direct advertising and marketing emails are purported to be redirected to a “Spam” field.

However, Gmail promoting emails which can be additionally unsolicited — which can’t be ignored by Google — are knowingly directed to the “Promotions” inbox,” stated noyb.

In December 2020, the CNIL fined Google $120 million for dropping monitoring cookies with out consent.

In January, the French watchdog fined Google $170 million for “darkish patterns it discovered Google deploying in cookie consent flows”.

(Except for the headline, the remainder of this IANS article is un-edited)

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