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Saturday, November 17, 2012
Judge Approves FTC's $22.5-million Fine on Google

U.S. District Judge Susan Illston on Friday approved a $22.5-million fine against Google , a few hours after a hearing arguments.

The fine was part of a deal Google reached with the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) three months ago to settle charges that it bypassed privacy settings on Apple's Safari browser to track users' online activity and show them personalized ads.

The $22.5-million penalty was not as high as the consumer advocacy group Consumer Watchdog expected, as it tried to block the settlement, arguing that Google should have admitted wrongdoing as part of the settlement.

"We were disappointed, but think we made important points that will have an impact on how similar cases are dealt with in the future," said John Simpson, director of the Consumer Watchdog Privacy Project.

Google made nearly $38 billion in revenue last year so the $22.5 million fine is a drop in the bucket for the search engine giant.

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