YouTube slapped with $3.2 billion lawsuit in UK over child privacy violations
What you need to know
- YouTube has been hit with a new lawsuit in the UK, which alleges that it violated children's privacy laws.
- The class action style lawsuit seeks damages of more than £2.5 billion ($3.2 billion) from the Google-owned platform.
- Google paid a $170 million fine for YouTube's child privacy violations in the U.S. last year.
A class action style lawsuit has been filed against Google-owned video platform YouTube in the UK, alleging it of breaking children's privacy laws in the country and harvesting their data for advertisers. The representative action has been brought by law firm Hausfeld and Foxglove, a tech justice non-profit.
The lawsuit alleges that YouTube has violated the UK Data Protection Act and EU's General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR), which protect children's privacy rights. It seeks more than £2.5 billion ($3.2 billion) in damages for over 5 million British kids and their parents.
Duncan McCann, who is the representative claimant in the action, said in a statement:
This is not the first time that YouTube has been accused of violating children's privacy. In September last year, the Federal Trade Commission fined Google $170 million for YouTube's violation of the Children's Online Privacy Protection Act (COPPA).
When asked for a response, a YouTube spokesperson told TechCrunch:
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Of course Google tracks children. They make money from collecting as much personal information as possible. If I had a kid at that age, I'd definitely give them a phone with ungoogled android, like /e/ from e foundation, so they can still use android apps, but their phone will not send any personal data to Google.