$4.3 Billion Lawsuit Against Google Blocked in UK

The top court in the UK blocked an enormous class action lawsuit against Google.

The 3.2 billion pound (or $4.3 billion USD) lawsuit claimed that the company unlawfully tracked personal information and internet activity of millions of iPhone users.

The UK Supreme Court’s judges unanimously granted a Google appeal against the UK’s first such data privacy case. 

The landmark lawsuit claimed that Google illegally misused the data of millions of iPhone users by tracking and collecting data. Specifically, by tracking and collating their internet usage through the Safari browser from 2011 through 2012, even when users were assured by the device that they would be opted out of this level of tracking by default.

The lawsuit says that Google bypassed default privacy settings in order to track growing histories, and then used this for commercial purposes. 

Google has said that it has focused for years on creating data privacy that respects data and its users, and claimed that because this took place a decade ago, it has since been resolved. 

British businesses rejoiced in the ruling. Some have said that the ruling means there is a “loss of control” of an individual’s personal data, and that that in and of itself is not sufficient enough for collective action for compensation. Those in favor of the ruling have said that data litigation will undoubtedly continue, but the focus will be on claims where damage was suffered. 

Legal experts have immediately weighed in on it, saying that the decision will mean the “floodgates” remain closed to class actions on data privacy in the UK. 

The decision made Wednesday will upset a string of similar claims waiting in line against other technology companies, such as Facebook and TikTok. 

The case sought to extend Britain’s case action regime to include compensation claims for the misuse of data, even in cases where there is no obvious financial loss or distress.

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