Statements
2023

Accountable Tech Leads Day of Action Calling on Google to Stop Collecting and Retaining Sensitive Health Location Data that Endangers Abortion Seekers

For Immediate Release
May 9, 2023
Contact: press@accountabletech.org

 

Campaign comes after new Accountable Tech research finds Google’s continued collection of sensitive user data despite its promise nearly one year ago to protect users.

Today, Accountable Tech and a coalition of advocacy partners led a Day of Action calling on Google to stop collecting and retaining sensitive user data that can be used to prosecute people seeking abortion care in post-Roe America.

The push comes after new research from Accountable Tech – featured in a column published today by the Washington Post and reported on by NBC News – found that Google continues to track and store sensitive location history data for short trips to abortion clinics, along with search query data collected on Google Maps and stored for 18 months by default, despite promising to protect user privacy after the Supreme Court overturned Roe v. Wade.

“Google’s stockpile of sensitive user data amassed through its surveillance advertising business model has always been disturbing, but in a post-Roe America, it’s downright dangerous,” said Nicole Gill, Accountable Tech Co-Founder and Executive Director. “As Google promises privacy on one hand and continues its surveillance operation on the other, they are not only exposing users to the threat of legal prosecution for seeking abortion care, but giving users a false sense of security.”

The coalition — which includes advocacy organizations like Color of Change, GLAAD, UltraViolet, Supermajority, and Fight for the Future — is also organizing a grassroots petition and coordinating direct engagement with lawmakers to urge structural reform. To learn more about the day of action please visit heygoogle.info.

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