A U.K. Class Action-like lawsuit filed against Google by Millions of iPhone users has been given the Green Light to Proceed
It was reported earlier today in the U.K. and U.S. that a U.K. lawsuit filed against Google by millions of iPhone users over data-collection claims was given the go-ahead by London appeals judges who overturned an earlier ruling that had thrown out the case.
Bloomberg reports that "The group, known as "Google You Owe Us," were seeking as much as 3.2 billion pounds ($3.9 billion), according to documents filed with the court last year. The organization, which represents more than 4 million people, said the Alphabet Inc. unit unlawfully gathered personal information by bypassing Apple Inc.’s iPhone default privacy settings." Below is a short video made by the "Google You Owe Us" group.
Bloomberg further noted that the lawsuit is "Led by consumer advocate Richard Lloyd. The group was given permission to hear the case as a 'representative action' that is akin to a U.S. class action, after arguing that all the customers share mutual interests. The court said Lloyd had agreed to seek the 'lowest common denominator' of damages, potentially lowering the value of the lawsuit.
Judge Geoffrey Vos said Wednesday in his ruling: "This case, quite properly if the allegations are proved, seeks to call Google to account for its allegedly wholesale and deliberate misuse of personal data without consent, undertaken with a view to a commercial profit." For more on this, read the full Bloomberg report.
Humor for the day: Google's spokeswoman stated in an email, "Protecting the privacy and security of our users has always been our No. 1 priority."
The Inquirer, reporting on this today from London, adds: "Though the case was thrown out last year by the UK High Court, which claimed defendants had not offered up a sufficient basis for their demand of compensation against Google, the Court of Appeal today overturned the decision.
In disagreement with the High Court's decision, it ruled that an individual's personal data has a value and that a loss of this data can give rise to damage and therefore a right to compensation
The "Google You Owe Us" group led by director Richard Lloyd commented on the verdict by stating that "Today's judgment sends a very clear message to Google and other large tech companies: you are not above the law.
Google can be held to account in this country for misusing peoples' personal data, and groups of consumers can together ask the courts for redress when firms profit unlawfully from ‘repeated and widespread' violations of our data protection rights. We will take this fight against Google all the way."
"Google has resisted the case at every stage, including an unsuccessful attempt to have the case thrown out of the UK's jurisdiction. Today's judgment is a major step forward in what is still likely to be a lengthy process." For more on this, read the full report by The Inquirer.