GOOGLE'S TOOLBAR is more persistent than you'd like about sending all your search stats to Google, even though you've told it not to do so, if a recent claim is correct.
The problem was brought to light by Ben Edelman, a lawyer who serves as co-counsel in a few legal actions against the search engine giant. He does disclose this connection on his webpage.
According to Edelman, Google Toolbar is just too hard to shake. Especially if it's doing something you've explicitly told it you don't want it to continue doing.
If you flip the switch and tell Google Toolbar to stop reporting your search queries to Google, the little app will just keep at it anyway apparently, albeit invisible to the user, firing query after query of your private searches off to Google's mothership. However, this will only happen if you've previously activated Google Toolbar's enhanced features, which he points out is far too easy to do.
Edelman provides screen captures and video footage of the processing, just in case naysayers claim it's not true. He also argues that Google didn't put much effort into alerting people about it. Of course users, being the odd lot that we are, care little about reading terms and conditions, as that's often the only thing standing between us and making use of the app we want to use.
There is a valid point here, of course. When you disable the toolbar, you do it because you don't really want to send those "stats" about your search queries back to Google. It obviously defeats the purpose of disabling the toolbar if those "Enhanced Features" keep sending your information off to Google's Borg hive anyway.
Google hasn't yet responded to inquiries, but this is something that should quickly go away with a software update to the Google Toolbar and fall into a void of Google's Really Bad Ideas. µ
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