Google Gives Up Scanning Personal Gmail

Google recently announced the end of its policy of scanning user emails for targeted advertising purposes — a controversial practice that riled privacy advocates and spurred legal challenges.

Gmail is the world’s most widely used email provider, with more than 1.2 billion users.

Google attributed its decision to gains it has made in the enterprise. Its G Suite business over the past year has more than doubled in size to 3 million paying corporate customers, who are not subject to the scanning process.

“G Suite’s Gmail is already not used as input for ads personalization, and Google has decided to follow suit later this year in our free consumer email service,” said Diane Greene, senior vice president at Google Cloud. “This decision brings Gmail ads in line with how we personalize ads for other Google products.”

Ads are based on user settings, and users can disable personalization, Greene noted.

G Suite will continue to be ad-free, she said.


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