Microsoft Continues Their Anti-Google Campaign by Pointing Out Privacy Issues
In the most recent phase of its anti-Google campaign named “Scroogled, Microsoft has begun to highlight the fact that Android users’ personal information is being shared with developers every tme they download an application. The “Scroogled” website was recently updated with a new video detailing how a user’s full name, email address and the neighborhood they live in are all sent from Google to the developer every time their app is downloaded from the Google Play store. The campaign’s messaging continues by warning that this whole issue allows app developers to track what apps users buy, “even health related ones.”
According to the video, “most app makers are trustworthy. However, in the wrong hands, who knows what they’ll do with your info?” According to the video, the transfer of information occurs every time a user buys an Android app from Google Play. The video shows info being collected to draw conclusions about hypothetical issues, including the fact that the user may be “overweight,” have “cholesterol issues,” or “having a baby.” The campaign continues by saying that “Google does not clearly warn you that this transfer of personal info occurs every time you buy an app. It's not stated in the checkout process, on the receipt, or in your account history."
Microsoft’s efforts are all designed to push its own competing Windows Phone platform, which the company notes does not share such personal information with developers. Google, for its part, noted its sharing practices are disclosed in the terms of service that all users must agree to, but realistically, how many users actually read the terms of service agreements? Microsoft’s senior manager for Windows Phone, Greg Sullivan, told the Associated Press that he believes his company offers a "better alternative" for mobile users. He characterized Google's sharing of users' personal information as "nefarious."
The recent update to the “Scroogled” campaign against Google is the third major attack launched by Microsoft. In its first phase, Microsoft detailed how Google’s algorithms go through users’ personal emails to target them with advertisements, in turn pushing its own Outlook email service. The second campaign explained how Google Shopping is a list of targeted ads that Microsoft believes “unsuspecting consumers assume are search results.” Microsoft pushed its alternative, Bing, which the company said provides “an honest search result.”
Source: Associated Press