For those unfamiliar, back in February according to Stanford researcher Jonathan Mayer, it was discovered that Google was “planting” cookies on Apple’s Safari browser and ultimately bypassed some of Apple’s software privacy settings. While not malicious in nature, it basically allowed Google to create targeted advertising at Safari users on laptops, computers, iPhones and iPads which basically surmounted to deception. Google claims that they did not anticipate that this would happen and removed the files promptly, but not before the FTC had something to say about it.
According to a person familiar with the matter, Google is currently negotiating with the FTC over how big a fine that they would have to pay for this incident, claiming that the fine could go as high as $10 million. Of course given that these alleged negotiations are private, it’s hard to say if the information is accurate and can be believed. However if Google were to be fined, it would most definitely send a clear message to other internet companies about the way they handle their users’ private information.