The class action lawsuit in question was filed in 2020. It said Google misled users by telling them it did not track their data or online activities via cookies and apps while Hidden mode It has been activated. In fact, Google's advertising software continued to track the user and serve ads that reflected their interests, according to the lawsuit. US District Judge Yvonne Gonzalez Rogers, who oversaw the case, postponed the scheduled trial after the lawyers said they had reached a preliminary settlement.
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Terms of the settlement were not disclosed, although a formal settlement is expected to be unveiled in early 2024 to receive judge approval.
Google and the lawyers behind the initial lawsuit did not respond to requests for comment.
The lawsuit seeks damages of at least $5,000 per user for violations of federal wiretap and California privacy laws, or an estimated $5 billion.
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Rogers rejected Google's attempt to dismiss the lawsuit in August, claiming that it could not find evidence that users consented to the collection of information when using tools that Google designed to provide the highest level of privacy.
Google has faced a lot of legal problems in recent months. A jury found the company guilty of illegally monopolizing the Google Play Store and forcing app developers to work through its app providers. It is also awaiting a judge's decision in its legal battle with the Justice Department over allegations that it created a monopoly through agreements signed with browser developers and phone makers to make Google the default search engine.
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