British iPhone Users May Be Owed Money By Google In Data Lawsuit

Are you British? Did you own & use an iPhone for several months between 2011 and 2012? Well, Google may owe you some compensation for bypassing iOS’s security settings and illegally collecting data on you, as well as 5.4 million other Brits.

So wait… What’s happened? Well, when you use Apple’s Safari browser, security settings ban other companies from installing cookies - even if they get user consent. The workaround Google landed themselves into a big pile of metaphorical poop by doing this a few years back, and so far they’ve had to pay through the nose for it. 

A $22.5 million settlement when brought up with the Federal Trade Commission and a number of unknown amounts for settlements here in the UK.

And now, a huge lawsuit has been launched by advocacy group Google You Owe Us, led by the former director of Which? Richard Lloyd. It’s the first of its kind here in Britain, as we’re never really the types to do lawsuits of this magnitude.

Whether it’s successful is not clear at the moment, but given how much Google paid to make it go away in the US means they have some chance.

“In all my years speaking up for consumers, I’ve rarely seen such a massive abuse of trust where so many people have no way to seek redress on their own,” Lloyd commented.

“Through this action, we will send a strong message to Google and other tech giants in Silicon Valley that we’re not afraid to fight back if our laws are broken.”

Sorry Android users, but this lawsuit is specifically for iPhone users. Plus you’ll get a little more annoyed when I tell you exactly how much money each customer could get from this… Lloyd estimates all users will be eligible for “several hundred pounds each,” with other news sites claiming figures between £200 and £500.

The future of this is up in the air. If unsuccessful, then it’s just a nothing burger of information and a gigantic waste of money (& court time). But if it is won, I’m looking forward to a little extra money in my account, but more importantly, this may provide some standards around tracking user activity and targeted ads.

P.S. If you want to turn them off, here’s how (down at the bottom).