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Google shares rise as UK High Court blocks mass data privacy case

Google shares are higher in the US Monday, following a ruling in a UK High Court that a case against the tech giant will not go ahead. The case, led by a former director of UK group Which?, Richard Lloyd, was suing Sundar Pichai’s business for allegedly stealing private data from iPhone users, between 2011 and 2012.

By 1455 BST, Google shares were 0.53% higher at $1,174.00. The stock has been flat to lower in recent weeks.

Google’s UK court case

The ‘Google, You Owe Us’ campaign was created to seek damages from the tech firm after it was discovered the company tracked iPhone users’ phones, without permission, for a number of months between 2011 and 2012.

The UK’s high Court said Monday, that the mass case against the internet behemoth would not be heard, due to a number of key factors. They included that the case could not prove the damages against users that it claimed.

In addition, the judge said it would be impossible to reliably calculate exactly how many users had been affected by the issue.

Activist Lloyd, was disappointed with the announcement.

“Today’s judgment is extremely disappointing and effectively leaves millions of people without any practical way to seek redress and compensation when their personal data has been misused,” Lloyd said in a statement

“Google’s business model is based on using personal data to target adverts to consumers and they must ask permission before using this data. The court accepted that people did not give permission in this case yet slammed the door shut on holding Google to account,” he added.

Lloyd said he plans to appeal the decision.

Google case ‘without merit’

Unsurprisingly, Google was pleased at the decision over a case it described as being ‘without merit.’

“The privacy and security of our users is extremely important to us. This claim is without merit, and we’re pleased the Court has dismissed it,” Google said in response to a Reuters request for comment.

About the author

Ilona Billington
Ilona is a freelance writer and editor with over 15 years experience reporting and writing about UK and European economics, real estate, financial markets and central banks.

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