Google wants to know what you get up to in your home. Yes it has spent $3.2 billion on acquiring a business with the aim of being the platform for running all sorts of electronic devices in your private space. It’s a big figure but probably makes great business sense for a company determined to profit from its knowledge about consumers. Here are our top reasons why we don’t welcome this news:
1. Google does not respect the right to privacy. Based on prior actions, that we have all learned about after the fact, it places its business interests over the right to privacy. Not just our view, take a look at the Google Streetview issue, or our Safari breach or many other breaches.
2. Any information gleaned from devices controlled by Google will likely be consolidated into its file on you. Let’s be blunt, information equals profit for Google. Why else would it spend so much on a thermostat control system.
3. Google Glass shows that Google has an insatiable appetite for information about you. You would just be opening up you home to it by allowing it in.
4. The information will be used. The downside to jazzy devices and controls in the home would be even more targeted advertisements. Enough already!
5. Google’s attitude to the law. It’s fighting our case in England by saying that it answers to Californian law effectively. If it abuses its position in your home, where are you going to go? No regulator in the UK seems interested. The courts may be toothless (let’s see what the High Court decides on this later). And the Government seems intent on keeping cozy with this important propaganda vehicle.
All in all, we don’t want Google in our homes. Fine for the odd internet search. Not fine for anything else.