“If our systems determine that someone has visited one of these locations, we will delete those entries from Location History shortly after the visit,” Google executive Jen Fitzpatrick announced on Friday. The change will come into effect in the coming weeks. The technology giant thus enables its users to break the law because it fits into its own political agenda.
Other places where Google no longer wants to store location data from smartphones in the future are fertility clinics, addiction clinics and weight loss clinics. With the announcement, the technology group is reacting to the abortion ruling of the US Supreme Court.
Just over a week ago, the Supreme Court issued the landmark ruling “Roe v. Wade” in 1973, which enshrined a national right to abortion. (eXXpress reported) This means that the US states can now largely or even completely ban abortions. Some conservative-governed states have already done so.
Even before the Supreme Court ruling, there had been fears in the United States that authorities could use smartphone location data in investigations into abortions. Several US states have passed legislation in recent months encouraging individuals to sue doctors and others who have helped women obtain abortions.
Parliamentarians from the Democrats therefore wrote a letter to Google boss Sundar Pichai in May, in which they asked him to stop collecting location data so that the data would not be used as a “tool by right-wing extremists”.