Google Data Privacy Ruling Widens ECPA Divide

By Allison Grande (December 9, 2013, 9:23 PM EST) -- A California federal judge last week disagreed with a colleague in concluding that Google Inc.'s aggregation of user data across its platforms did not fall under an exemption to federal wiretap law, exemplifying the struggles courts are having when it comes to applying the outdated statute to modern communications, attorneys say.

In a Dec. 3 ruling, Northern District of California Judge Paul S. Grewal ruled that a proposed class of Google users had failed to show that the company's aggregation of Gmail messages with other data was outside the ordinary course of business and therefore didn't fall under an exception to the...

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