This policy change which was implemented on Thursday allows private data collected by one Google service to be used by other Google services. Google reacted to the allegation by stating that they were unaware that this policy violated European law. Google also added that the new policy adopted by it would help in more effective and optimized searches and also better targeted ads to users. Despite continuous warnings from the EU, Google has decided to proceed with the proposed changes anyway.
In France, data regulators have launched a continent wide investigation challenging the legality of the move by Google. The change in policy saw more than sixty guidelines from different services combine into one. This implies that the history and browsing data which is gathered when a user signs into any one of Google’s services can be shared across all its services.
The business model of Google relies heavily on the data collected from individual user behaviour. This new combined model was implemented only this Thursday. What would does mean? A search on YouTube will affect the ads being displayed on a user’s Gmail account. The only way to opt out of this new agreement is by discontinuing the use of Google and its services. Logging out of these services will only reduce the amount of data stored but will not nullify it. Google has also received a letter from France’s watchdog CNIL asking it to suspend the rollout of the new policy.
There have been many websites who have published guides on how Google will now monitor a user’s browsing data. Users can delete their browsing and search history by logging onto google.com/history. Google has also notified its users over the past month by displaying prominent messages and notifications regarding the change in policy. Google has also developed a dedicated section in order to keep their users informed on the issue.