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Google to Stop Reading Your E-Mail
28 June 2017, 02:15 | Virginia Benson
Google no longer to scan Gmail messages for selling Targeted Advertisements
Google is finally putting an end to one of its most controversial ad practices, the one that involved scanning emails of its users.
Google announced the move in a blog post that noted the changes are coming to Gmail only.
The new Google blogpost stated that G Suite will continue to operate without ads, meaning the company plans to stop scanning the consumer version of Gmail in order to feature targeted ads. Since Google does not scan G Suite emails for the purposes of ad targeting, the company wanted to unify the policy and expectations between its business-related services and its consumer offerings.
I applaud Google for making this change, which is still presumably months away from actual enactment, but I and many others ask the company to go much, much further in putting the privacy, safety and security of all users first. Consumer users will continue to see ads displayed on their Gmail accounts. Supposedly if you were talking about a trip with a friend, Google might target ads at you for airfare and hotels. These settings, including ad personalisation, can be customised, letting customers opt out of targeted data collection entirely.
"When they first came up with the risky idea of monetising the content of our communications, Privacy International warned Google against setting the precedent of breaking the confidentiality of messages for the sake of additional income", the charity's executive director Dr Gus Hosein said.
Although G Suite customers, who pay Google for business use of a portfolio of web apps including Gmail, Google Docs, Calendar and Contacts, have never had their messages scanned for use in advertising, many potential customers were nonetheless put off the product by the mistaken impression that they were, Ms Greene said. Internet lesson #2: if something claims to be free, the product is usually you. Just toggle off and the ads will stop for the said account. The post concluded by saying all users will have control over what personal data they share via myaccount.google.com.
More than three million companies pay to use Google G Suite for businesses, according to Google. In Gmail, Google shows ads based on user settings, and these can be disabled in the settings.
For users of free Gmail, ads will still be personalized based on other information Google gathers, like search history.
Paying Gmail users already don't receive email-scanning ads but might've been confused in differentiating from the free version, Bloomberg said.
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