Google’s Dragonfly would apparently gather Chinese residents’ telephone number

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A model for China’s online search engine would apparently make it simple for the federal government to track users’ searches.


Stephen Shankland/ CNET.

A model for Google’s censored online search engine in China would apparently link users’ inquiries to their telephone number, making it simpler for the federal government to track their searches.

The engine, apparently code-named Dragonfly and created for Android gadgets, would leave out material that isn’t authorized by the Chinese federal government, such as details on democracy, totally free speech and demonstrations, according to TheIntercept

Sources informed the publication that prototypes for Dragonfly connect the search app to users’ telephone number, indicating those who look for prohibited details might be questioned or apprehended if security companies obtained Google’s search records.

“This is very problematic from a privacy point of view, because it would allow far more detailed tracking and profiling of people’s behavior,” Cynthia Wong, senior web scientist with Human Rights Watch, informed TheIntercept “Linking searches to a phone number would make it much harder for people to avoid the kind of overreaching government surveillance that is pervasive in China.”

Dragonfly has actually gotten pushback from Google’s labor force. About 1,000 staff members are opposing the task, and some individuals are apparently leaving the business entirely

“We’ve been investing for many years to help Chinese users, from developing Android, through mobile apps such as Google Translate and Files Go, and our developer tools,” Google stated in a declaration in reaction to an ask for remark. “But our work on search has been exploratory, and we are not close to launching a search product in China.”

On Thursday, a bipartisan group of 16 legislators sent out a letter to Google asking if its operate in China indicated the search giant would adhere to China’s web censorship and security policies.

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