Google Settles $5 Billion Lawsuit Over Allegedly Spying on People Using Chrome's Incognito Mode

The original lawsuit demanded Google pay plaintiffs between $100 and $1000.

(Photo Illustration by Idrees Abbas/SOPA Images/LightRocket via Getty Images)

Google has come to an agreement to settle a $5 billion privacy lawsuit that alleges it spied on people who used the "incognito mode" option in Google Chrome

The lawsuit was filed three years ago and claimed the company told its users that it wasn't tracking whatever they were doing on the internet while in incognito mode. However, the lawsuit argued that Google's analytics, cookies, and apps tracked their activity even when they set the browser to private. 

The terms of the settlement were not made public, but the original complaint included a payout between $100 and $1,000 per plaintiff, which the lawsuit stated could be in the millions. If Google lost the case, the company could have been a costly battle in the billions.

The settlement was reached on Thursday, but it still has to be approved by a federal judge. The plaintiffs' lawyers said they will be presenting the court with a final settlement agreement in the case by Feb. 24.

Google recently announced new protection for user location data. Other tech giants such as Amazon, Meta, and Google owner Alphabet have all recently faced lawsuits from federal regulators alleging violations of various privacy laws. 

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