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Google Fights for Right to Scan People’s Email
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Google’s attorneys are fighting in court to keep the right to scan emails for relevant ads. They are asking a federal judge to dismiss a lawsuit that will prevent the technology giant from its practice of email scanning, according to Find Law.

In the court records that have been filed before the hearing that will take place in San Jose, Google claims, “all users of email must necessarily expect that their emails will be subject to automated processing.”


A class action lawsuit has been filed against Google, finding the company “in violation of California’s privacy laws and federal wiretapping statutes.” The lawsuit claims that Google basically acquires, opens and reads people’s private emails. Adding onto the situation, the lawsuit says that non-Gmail users who sent messages to Gmail users also get their messages scanned- and those non-Gmail users never agreed to the Google’s terms. Google claims that “no humans read your email,” and that the process is completely automated.

Google described AdWords and how it targets a person based on their email contents. If a person’s email mentions chocolate several times, ads about Godiva may show up, or Nestle chocolate. The tech company comments, “[they are making an] effort to criminalize ordinary business practices that have been part of Google’s free Gmail service since it was introduced nearly a decade ago.” Google is asking the judge to dismiss the case. Critics question Google’s practice and believe that their email should be private and not open for download-assessment and ad targeting by any company.

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1 Comment

  1. Jeff Spangler

    September 9, 2013 at 3:49 pm

    This is one reason I don’t use my GMail account. Permission to snoop your email is probably buried in the Terms of Service, but hardly emphasized enough so that users can make an intelligent decision on consent.

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