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Google fails to escape UK Safari tracking lawsuit

Safari Users Against Google's Secret Tracking get their wish
Thu Jan 16 2014, 12:27
Google logo (Robert Scoble Flickr)

INTERNET GIANT Google has lost its attempt to get the lawsuit alleging it bypassed settings in Apple's Safari web browser thrown out of a UK court.

A British group that calls itself "Safari Users Against Google's Secret Tracking" accused the firm of bypassing security settings in Apple's web browser to track their online activities and target them with personalised advertisements.

The group filed a lawsuit against Google in a UK court, but as we reported in December, Google wasn't keen on defending itself in a UK court case about its Safari tracking. The firm claimed the lawsuit would have only a "trivial" result and that it isn't subject to British laws because it is headquartered in the US.

A Google spokesperson said in December, "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."

This didn't go down well with the group, which said that Google's attempt to evade legal action was "misconceived", adding that the internet giant "should answer to British justice".

However, a UK High Court ruling handed down today sided with the Safari Users Against Google's Secret Tracking, the Belfast Telegraph reported.

Mr Justice Tugendhat ruled on Thursday the UK courts were the "appropriate jurisdiction" to try the group's claims.

The judge said, "I am satisfied that there is a serious issue to be tried in each of the claimant's claims for misuse of private information.

"The claimants have clearly established that this jurisdiction is the appropriate one in which to try each of the above claims."

Google is yet to comment on the court's ruling, but we'll update this story if and when it does. µ


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