Law firms file class action suit against Google
A group of Canadian law firms has proposed a class action lawsuit against Google, suggesting that the company is in breach of the country’s privacy laws. The suit has been filed in the Supreme Court of British Columbia, with additional filings taking place in Toronto and Montreal. It alleges that Google profits from personal information collected from Canadian consumers without their consent.
The action involves data collected by Google's own services and through Google Ads and Google Analytics. This data allegedly includes name, gender, location, search terms, IP address, type of device used and websites visited. This can allegedly reveal personal details such as marital and parental status, income bracket and sexual orientation. The suit goes on the claim that Google creates profiles of users for the purposes of targeted advertising without the knowledge or consent of these users, in violation of Canadian privacy laws. The claim also alleges that Google violates consumer protection and competition laws by misrepresenting its privacy and data practices. The claim seeks compensation for invasion of privacy, trespass and consumer protection violations. It also seeks an order preventing Google from continuing these practices.
The participating law firms are Branch MacMaster, Camp Fiorante Matthews Mogerman, Arvay Finlay, Foreman & Company, Belleau Lapointe, David Loukidelis QC Law and Greg McMullen Law.
“The claim alleges that Google turns Canadians' electronics into tracking devices, which it uses to build profiles on almost every Internet user in Canada,” said Luciana Brasil, a partner at Branch MacMaster. “Even people Google has no relationship with, all without their consent. There is no reason Canadians should tolerate what we say is extensive surveillance of their daily online activities, especially because Canada has laws specifically intended to protect them from such actions.”