Late last year, a group calling itself “Google You Owe Us” filed a lawsuit against Google on behalf of 4.4 million people in the UK whom it believed may have been unlawfully tracked by the search giant through their iPhones without their consent. Today, the UK High Court has denied that complaint.
The group, led by former Which director Richard Lloyd, claimed that Google owed those affected users £1 billion (approximately $1.3 billion) for snooping on them between June 2011 and February 2012. According to the group, the search giant bypassed default privacy settings on users’ iPhones in order to extract their data.
However, Justice Mark Warby blocked the case on grounds that it failed to support the claim that people actually suffered from the incident in question and that it was impossible to calculate the actual number of users affected by the alleged privacy breach. Lloyd said his group would still appeal the High Court’s decision on behalf of the 20,000 users who had joined his group’s campaign.
The case involved how Google allegedly used cookies to monitor people in the country and sell ads based on the personal information of those iPhone users. While the UK High Court rejected the complaint, Google was ordered to pay $39.5 million in the US over a similar data privacy complaint.