Privacy activists attempt block of Google's purchase

Privacy groups have lodged a complaint with the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) over Google's proposed acquisition of online advertising company DoubleClick. The merger will give the combined company unprecedented power, they argue. Three groups have asked the FTC to halt the deal until it receives assurances about privacy protection. Google said the complaint fails to identify any activity undertaken by it that falls short of accepted privacy standards.

The Electronic Privacy Information Centre, the Centre for Digital Democracy and the US Public Interest Research Group have filed the complaint, alleging that the concentration of information about users that would be controlled by the combined company could lead to dangerous privacy breaches. "Google's proposed acquisition of DoubleClick will give one company access to more information about the internet activities of consumers than any other company in the world," said the complaint. "Moreover, Google will operate with virtually no legal obligation to ensure the privacy, security, and accuracy of the personal data that it collects."

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News source: The Reg

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