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Google to pay $22.5M over allegations of secret tracking: source

Google has settled a privacy case for $22.5 million, according to a source.

By Associated Press / July 10, 2012

A man walks by an advertisement of Apple's iPad in Shanghai, China.

Eugene Hoshiko/AP/Fiile

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SAN FRANCISCO

Google has agreed to pay a $22.5 million fine to settle allegations that it broke a privacy promise by secretly tracking the online activities of millions of people who use Apple's Safari web browser.

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That's according to a person familiar with Google Inc.'s negotiations to settle a case brought by the Federal Trade Commission. The person who spoke to The Associated Press Tuesday asked not to be identified because the agreement still needs to be approved by the FTC.

The Wall Street Journal first reported on the pending settlement.

If approved, the $22.5 million fine would be the largest penalty ever imposed by the FTC.

The agency has been investigating whether unauthorized changes Google made to Safari's privacy settings violated a recent FTC agreement prohibiting the company from misleading consumers.

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