Google announces that visit information to highly private places such as abortion clinics will be automatically deleted from the location history

Google stores the places you visit with your mobile device logged in to your Google account as a location history . This has the problem that not only the location information when using Google Maps but also the information of the place visited with the smartphone is recorded. In response, Google will change its specifications to automatically remove visits to highly private locations such as abortion clinics, domestic violence (DV) shelters , and weight loss clinics from users' location history in the coming weeks. Announced.

Protecting people's privacy on health topics

Google will auto-delete abortion clinic visits from user location history --The Verge

On Friday, July 1, 2022, Google's core system and experience vice president, Jen Fitzpatrick, announced several updates to protect user privacy and data.

・ Location history
Location history is a Google account setting that is turned off by default. Even if this is turned on and location history is enabled, users can easily delete some or all of their data at any time with simple information management features such as automatic deletion. .. In addition, we have taken specific measures so far regarding visit information to highly private places such as counseling centers, domestic violence shelters, abortion clinics, fertility treatment centers, addiction treatment facilities, weight loss clinics, and cosmetic surgery clinics. Although not, in the coming weeks, Google has announced that it will 'change the specification to immediately remove information about these locations from the location history.'

・ App user data
Google Play has strict protocols to protect user privacy. This includes a policy of 'prohibiting developers from selling sensitive personal user data' and a requirement that 'data can be safely processed only for purposes directly related to the operation of the app'. is included. To further promote user transparency and control, we're introducing a new data safety section on Google Play to help developers provide more information about how apps collect, share, and protect data. In addition, Google Fit and Fitbit will provide users with settings and tools for easy access and control of their personal information, including options for changing and deleting personal information at any time. For example, Fitbit users who choose to track their menstrual cycle in the app will be able to delete their menstrual logs one at a time. Fitzpatrick also said he plans to roll out an update that will allow users to delete multiple logs at once.

・ Law enforcement requirements for user data
Google has a track record of rigorously rejecting excessive and widespread data provision requests from law enforcement agencies. Google considers the privacy and security expectations of those who use its products, and responds to government requests, except when dealing with prohibited cases or when dealing with life-threatening situations such as emergencies. It is supposed to notify the user. In fact, Google claims to be the first major company to 'share the number and type of data requests received from the government' in its transparency report . In addition, Fitzpatrick said, 'We continue to work to protect our users from inappropriate government demands for data provision, and we continue to oppose the provision of overly widespread or legally unfavorable demands. I will go. ' He also said it would support bipartisan laws, such as the NDO Justice Act , recently passed by the US House of Representatives, to reduce secrets about government data requirements and increase transparency .

Foreign media The Verge said of Google's privacy-related update: 'This is to outlaw the Supreme Court's decision to overturn Roe v. Wade and the resulting abortion in some states. It seems to have happened as a result of the attempt. '

The Verge also said, 'These privacy updates are aimed at removing data on Google's servers that could be used to prosecute people seeking care, but Google is still a user. We have a lot of data about our activities. Search and YouTube history can also be used as evidence for our investigation, but Google's post doesn't mention them at all. '

in Web Service, Posted by logu_ii