Google Informs Users That it Reads Their Email

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Google updated Gmail’s terms of service this week to inform users that incoming and outgoing emails are automatically being scanned to help create targeted ads. Lovely. The update says that Google is using software to scan email when it is in transit or stored on Google’s servers.

“Our automated systems analyze your content (including emails) to provide you personally relevant product features, such as customized search results, tailored advertising, and spam and malware detection. This analysis occurs as the content is sent, received and when it is stored.”

Google’s Gmail users have protested the scanning of personal emails for targeted advertising, accusing the company of violating federal and state wiretapping and privacy laws. Google responded that users consent to such activity upon signing up to the free email service.

Reuters noted, “Last month, a U.S. judge decided not to combine several lawsuits that accused Google of violating the privacy rights of hundreds of millions of email users into a single class action.”

Readers: Are you OK with Google’s targeted advertising practices?

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