Google seeks to dismiss British court case over tracking Apple Safari users

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by CBR Staff Writer| 16 December 2013

A group of British internet users called Google’s move as ‘arrogant’, ‘immoral’ and ‘a disgrace’.

Google is trying to dismiss the UK lawsuit over Apple iPhone 'tracking' claims, arguing that the hearing on the case concerning the UK internet users' privacy allegations has to be done in California, US, where it is based, not by the British legal system.

The search major will also argue that the case does not comply with the standard needed to be heard at the UK high court and British courts have 'no jurisdiction' over the lawsuit.

A Google spokesman said that a case almost identical to this one was dismissed in its entirety two months ago in the US.

"We're asking the court to re-examine whether this case meets the standards required in the UK for a case like this to go to trial."

A group of British internet users dubbed 'Safari Users Against Google's Secret Tracking', called the search major's move as 'arrogant', 'immoral' and 'a disgrace' and alleged that it violated their privacy in England and has to be held accountable in the UK also.

Google had been sued by British internet users over allegedly bypassing security settings on their Apple devices' Safari browser and tracking their internet browsing habits.

One of the claimants Judith Vidal-Hall argued that Google should answer to British justice as it is very much in the country; has a specific UK site; staff; sells adverts as well makes money in the UK.

"It is ludicrous for it to claim that, despite all of this very commercial activity, it won't answer to our courts," Hall said.

"If consumers are based in the UK and English laws are abused, the perpetrator must be held to account here, not in a jurisdiction that might suit them better.

"Google's preference that British consumers should travel all the way to California to seek redress for its wrongdoings is arrogant, immoral and a disgrace.

"We will fight this attempt to dismiss the case robustly."

In August last year, the US Federal Trade Commission asked Google to pay a civil penalty of $22.5m to settle claims of evading the privacy settings of Apple users the Safari browser.

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