AVG says it can sell your browsing data in updated privacy policy

20 Sep 2015 | Author: | No comments yet »

AVG Antivirus New Privacy Policy Can Sell Browsing History To Advertisers.

A Reddit discussion has heard from furious users who spotted that the simplified policy effectively gives the company permission to sell its mailing lists to third parties for fun and profit.Antivirus major AVG Technologies have updated its privacy policy and the company is already facing a backlash as the changes proposed to the privacy policy allow AVG to sell the browsing data of consumers.

There are many who are of the opinion that browsing on the internet and the search history that you do on your computers or smartphones or laptops are absolutely safe in the hands of the antivirus companies. AVG stated under ‘Do You Share My Data?’ in the Q&A about the new policy, which is automatically enforced on 15 October: “Yes, though when and how we share it depends on whether it is personal data or non-personal data. AVG may share non-personal data with third parties and may publicly display aggregate or anonymous information.” AVG has hit back at the criticism in a blog post today, by which we mean confirmed that its stance is correct, explaining: “Usage data allows [AVG] to customise the experience for customers and share data with third parties that allow them to improve or develop new products. “This is also how taxi firms know how to distribute their fleets, and how advertisers know where to place banners and billboards, for example.

It will use cookies to track web searches and browsing activities, allowing the company to “build anonymous data profiles” and collect statistical data to be sold. Even at AVG, we have published non-personal information that we have collected regarding app performance.” This will placate some, but others fear that the lack of choice over this matter, which requires an active decision to opt out, is too clandestine.

However, the company stressed that it won’t be selling any identifying information, and that all data is anonymized in such a way that it can be linked back to users. In addition, device security information – including password attributes and encryption levels – is collected, as well as “information about where our products and services are used, including approximate location, zip code, area code, time zone, and the URL you came from to reach our products”. The new privacy policy comes into effect on 15 October, but AVG explained that the ability to collect search history data had also been included in previous privacy policies, albeit with different wording. Several Redditors have likened it to similar warnings in Windows 10’s Insider Programme which essentially say: ‘we can track you … but we won’t, unless we do.’ µ

That’s nice, as it’ll now be one page instead of having everyone scroll down and click on the accept button, but in that one page it lets you know what kind of data is collected. We will basically trade all our information for protection against viruses, which is not something we expected back when we started to trust these companies. The company explains their approach by saying that it is not going to give away anything that could be traced back at you, that everything they have is going to be anonymous and that the information provided is what you choose to provide. We use data to improve those products and services; provide support; send notifications, offers, and promotions.” What comes as free antivirus software, will be charged from users by selling their private data. The antivirus company has published its own brutally honest privacy policy that clearly sets out how it tracks users’ activity, gathers data, and shares that information with others.

But they are using cookies so that they can see what you are searching for on a site, see the exact activities that you are undergoing on that site and it can track your apps and “other” products, whatever that may mean. It also wanted to inform the users that the company can make money by selling off its free products that it has stored anonymously about its users to make money. Brad was recently published as a “Top Lawyer in New Jersey” in 2014 in the Legal Network for having the highest ethical standards and professional excellence. He also received Avvo’s “Excellent Rated Attorney” for excellent professional conduct and experience three years in a row: 2012, 2013, and 2014.

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