| Cult of Mac

Google To Pay $22.5 Million For Bypassing Privacy Settings In Safari On iOS [Report]


Screen Shot 2012-07-10 at 2.11.52 PM

Back in February it was discovered that Google was bypassing Apple’s privacy settings in Mobile Safari on iOS. The search giant was making ad revenue from Safari users’ web activity by ‘tricking’ the default iOS browser to allow multiple tracking cookies.

6 months later, and Google is about to pay the “largest penalty ever levied on a single company” by the U.S. Federal Trade Commission (FTC). Google will pay $22.5 million to settle the charges issued by the FTC, and the code in question has already been disabled by Google in Safari on iOS.

FTC Challenges Facebook’s Instagram Buyout, Deal Won’t Be Finalized For Months [Report]


Despite the headlines, everyone's favorite photography app hasn't been gobbled up by Facebook quite yet.

Reports surfaced earlier this month that the U.S. Federal Trade Commission (FTC) had begun a probe into Facebook’s proposed $1 billion acquisition of Instagram. No specific reasons were given for the FTC’s probe, but the acquisition was reportedly stalled due to antitrust concerns. It will likely take regulators up to a year to determine if the deal violates U.S. antitrust law.

Facebook will pay Instagram $200 million if the deal falls through. If the FTC approves the acquisition, Instagram’s two co-founders will net $500 million combined.

Google Could Be Fined By FTC For Working Around Millions Of Safari Users’ Privacy Settings


Wall Street Journal's illustration of how Google's tracking worked on Safari.
Wall Street Journal's illustration of how Google's tracking worked on Safari.

A couple of months ago, The Wall Street Journal raised a huge stink when they reported that Google was tracking millions of iOS & Mac Safari users against their wishes using a loophole in the way that Safari’s cookie handling algorithm.

Google on its parts always said it had done nothing wrong, and used known functionality in Safari to make sure their advertising cookies were always stored locally on users’ machines, even if their cookie settings were set to private. Looks like that might not have been enough for the FTC, though, who are now looking to start doling out fines to Google over the issue.