Posted by Margot Williams
Wednesday, May 12, 2010
With the classic timing of those who want to downplay bad news, Google responded late Friday afternoon to a letter of complaint issued by ten countries last month about the misfired rollout of the Google Buzz social networking application when Google exposed Gmail users’ personal e-mail contacts to the online world without user consent.Continue reading...
Posted by Margot Williams
Wednesday, March 31, 2010
Census Day - April 1 - got me thinking about the data the Census Bureau compiles about me. Google's partnership with the bureau got me thinking about who has the most data and who poses...Continue reading...
Posted by John M. Simpson
Tuesday, February 2, 2010
Google decided to take note of International Data Privacy Day last week by publishing their five guiding privacy principles. Here are the bullet points and there is ...Continue reading...
Posted by John M. Simpson
Wednesday, January 6, 2010
Google is notorious for maintaining a clutter-free, minimalist home page. It famously resisted adding a "privacy" link because adding the word would have brought the word count to 29, one more than the magic 28 words founders Larry Page and Sergey Brin insisted should be the maxim on the page.Continue reading...
By John Kell THE WALL STREET JOURNAL
Monday, December 28, 2009
Two consumer groups asked the U.S. Federal Trade Commission to block Google Inc.'s (GOOG) proposed $750 million acquisition of mobile advertising company AdMob Inc., as they allege the deal would diminish competition to the detriment of consumers. "Consumers will face higher prices, less innovation and fewer choices," said John M. Simpson, a consumer advocate at Consumer Watchdog. "The FTC should conduct the appropriate investigation, block the proposed Google/AdMob deal, and also address the privacy issues."Continue reading...
By John M. Simpson Op-Ed Commentary SACRAMENTO BEE
Sunday, November 29, 2009
Few doubt that Internet giant Google is succeeding in its audacious corporate mission "to organize the world's information and make it universally accessible and useful." The problem is that the mission puts Google directly at odds with our privacy rights, and Google appears unwilling to give consumers enough control.Continue reading...
By Heidi Collins Josh Levs CNN-TV
Thursday, November 12, 2009
Dashboard lets you get rid of some information on there. Google says part of the goal here is to stop the theory about what Google knows and doesn't know about you, to provide transparency. But there are some privacy advocates who say this is still this is not enough. For example, one group called Consumer Watchdog put out this statement saying, "If Google really wanted to give users control of their privacy, it would give consumers the ability to be anonymous from the company and advertisers in crucial areas like search data and online behavior." And you can see the statement right there.Continue reading...
By Bob Sullivan MSNBC.COM
Tuesday, November 10, 2009
The Google Dashboard tool is also limited to information gathered on users when logged in to Google. It doesn’t give consumers access to information that might be tied to individual consumers in other ways -- such as searches associated with individual computer IP address or cookies. That means it falls short of being a true privacy tool, according to privacy rights advocacy group Consumer Watchdog. "The dashboard gives the appearance of control without the actual ability to prevent Google from tracking you and delivering you to its marketers,” said John M. Simpson, a spokesman for the nonprofit organization. "It doesn't reveal anything about what is at the heart of what I call Google's 'black box' -- what is associated with your computer's IP address."Continue reading...
By Clint Boulton EWEEK.COM
Saturday, November 7, 2009
Indeed, privacy advocates, such as John Simpson of Consumer Watchdog, argued Google's gesture with Dashboard was just a straw man and that if the company really wanted to help it would allow users to prevent search information from being logged or to prevent Google from tracking a user's online activity while surfing the Web.Continue reading...
By Brian Krebs SECURITY FIX - WASHINGTON POST BLOG
Friday, November 6, 2009
... Dashboard doesn't really give users any clearer insights into what the company is doing with all of the data it collects. John Simpson, a consumer advocate with Consumer Watchdog, said if Google really wants people to use Dashboard, the company should make it easier to find, noting that there are few links to the tool from the landing pages of any Google properties. Simpson said Google also should make it easier for users to blow away stored search and activity data across multiple Google properties with a single click. "Google is maximizing the PR value of this feature in response to critics who have demanded online privacy guarantees," Simpson said in a written statement. "They are letting a little light shine into the black box that is Google, but to claim that this is transparency is absurd."Continue reading...
By Doug Gross CNN.COM
The advocacy group Consumer Watchdog, which has been critical of the amount of personal data Google stores, called the dashboard a small step in the right direction. "If Google really wanted to give users control over their privacy it would give consumers the ability to be anonymous from the company and its advertisers in crucial areas such as search data and online behavior," spokesman John M. Simpson said on the group's Web site. "The Dashboard give the appearance of control without the actual ability to prevent Google from tracking you and delivering you to its marketers."Continue reading...
By Sharon Gaudin COMPUTERWORLD
Critics Say Google Makes Some Privacy Progress, But Call For More Transparency Consumer Watchdog, a non-profit advocacy group formerly known as the Foundation for Taxpayer and Consumer Rights, said in a statement today that it applauds Google for giving users a single place to go to manage their data. But at the same tine, the group also came down hard on Google, contending that it needs to give users a vehicle for stopping the company from collecting any personal data. The company should also provide a way for users to delete their information from Google's servers, the group added.Continue reading...
By Andrew Noyes TECH DAILY DOSE - NATIONAL JOURNAL
Google launched an application Thursday that allows users to see what data is stored in their accounts, but at least one group says the effort doesn't go far enough. The Google Dashboard is "designed to be simple and useful" and summarizes data for a range of products from e-mail and calendar applications to social networking and video sharing platforms. Consumer Watchdog, a group that has repeatedly thrashed Google for its advertising and privacy protection practices, said the Internet giant should let users opt out of tracking and delete information associated with their computer's IP address from Google's servers.Continue reading...