U.S media broke the news that Google allows third-party companies to read users’ emails
International Business News – The Wall Street Journal reported on 2 February that Google has long allowed third-party businesses to read users’ emails. Those businesses provide users with Google Mail-associated services for shopping comparisons, travel planning, and email management.
According to the report, millions of Google users signed up and agreed to use third-party services associated with Google Mail, effectively giving the third-party companies access to their emails in their user agreements. Google knew that those companies were reading users’ emails but neglected to manage them.
The report mentions a big data company called “Loop”. Sources familiar with the company told reporters that “Loop” scans the emails of about 2 million Google, Microsoft or Yahoo users to collect data for marketing purposes. With the software scanning, the company can analyze about 100 million emails a day.
At some point two years ago, Loop manually read about 8,000 emails that the software could not read to improve the efficiency of the software scan.
“Sid Lord, a competitor to Loop and former technical director of big data company edatasource, determined that reading emails and obtaining user data for marketing purposes was a “common practice” in the industry, and that “some people might think it’s unseemly. Some people may think it’s a dirty secret, and that’s the reality.