California Settles with Google for $93 Million over Location-Privacy Practices

  • California AG Rob Bonta settled with Google for $93 million to resolve allegations that the company’s location-privacy practices violated the state’s consumer protection laws.
  • The settlement resolves allegations that Google told its users that they could opt out of location-tracking when using the company’s apps, when in fact Google continued to track users’ movements for its own commercial gain.
  • In addition to the $93 million payment, the settlement requires Google to implement a number of requirements meant to increase transparency for consumers on location data, its usage, and its impact on ad personalization. Key terms include clearer location-setting disclosures, a dedicated ‘Location Technologies’ webpage detailing data use, explicit disclosures for ad personalization based on location data, and the company’s internal privacy working group overseeing operational changes and disclosures regarding user privacy.
  • We have previously reported on settlements between Google and other states to resolve similar allegations regarding its location-tracking practices, including, most recently, a $9 million settlement with five states.