December 2nd, 2015

Google Accused Of Snooping On Students’ Internet Activity

By Chris Morran

Google is one of more than 200 companies that have signed on to the “Student Privacy Pledge,” in which it promises to, among other things, “Not collect, maintain, use or share student personal information beyond that needed for authorized educational/school purposes.” But a new complaint accuses the Internet biggie of breaking its oath and spying on kids’ online activity.
In a complaint filed with the Federal Trade Commission today, the Electronic Frontier Foundation accuses Google of “collecting, maintaining, using, and sharing student personal information” in violation of that Privacy Pledge.

According to the complaint, when students are logged in to their Google for Education accounts, Google collects and uses for its own benefit data about the students’ use of non-educational Google services.
“This includes recording students’ browsing behavior on every single Google-operated site students visit regardless of its relation to schoolwork… records of what students have searched for on the Internet and the results they click on, the videos they search for and watch on YouTube, the browser extensions they have installed, and their saved passwords,” reads the complaint. “Such data reveals highly personal information about students and is not necessary to deliver educational services.”

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