Computer Business Review

Google to face UK courts in breach of privacy case

by Kate Heslop| 16 January 2014

Google aims to fight High Court decision that it can be sued in the UK even though it is based in the US.

Google can be sued in Britain after people complained that it had bypassed privacy settings in Apple's Safari browser without telling them, the High Court has ruled.

In 2013 a group of Google users in the UK launched legal action saying that Google had illegally tracked their online activity between summer 2011 and spring 2012. The Britons claimed that Google tracked their online use without their consent, and allegedly did so to provide targeted advertising.

Google has argued that the case should be heard in the US where it is based.

High Court Judge Michael Tugendhat dismissed Google's claim that the case does not meet the standards required to go to trial in the UK, saying that the UK was an "appropriate" jurisdiction and the case should proceed.

Google has insisted that it will go to the Court of Appeal to try and challenge the ruling.

This is not the first time Google has been hit with a lawsuit after it was fined $22.5m by the US trade watchdog for disregarding Safari's security settings.

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