Home / / Google: We will stop scanning student data

Google: We will stop scanning student data

Search giant discontinues controversial mining policy in Apps for Education services

Google has long been vilified by privacy advocates for mining personal data to help target ads.
Google has long been vilified by privacy advocates for mining personal data to help target ads.

Google Inc has dialed back its controversial policy of scanning Gmail for information that could be actionable in targeting ads at users.

The search behemoth yesterday announced its decision to exclude students from the practice, saying it would no longer horde data from any Google Apps for Education services, including email and calendars, which serve an estimated 30m students

Privacy advocates and Google's commercial rivals have long condemned the Mountain View, California-based company's treatment of user data, but it is only recently that Google has shown signs of addressing those concerns.

"We know that trust is earned through protecting their privacy and providing the best security measures," Bram Bout, the director of Google's education product, wrote in a post on the company's blog.

However, Google will continue the scanning of data for other users. The company is currently embroiled in a dispute with Gmail users over the issue and a trial is due to start in a California court in October.