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Google has stopped scanning millions of Gmail accounts linked to an educational scheme, after it targeted users for advertising purposes.
The decision includes email accounts associated with Google Apps for Education (GAE).
This initiative provides teachers and students with access to free apps and storage, as well as customised @schoolname.edu email addresses.
The U-turn follows reports the scans might have breached a US privacy law.Google Halts Scanning of Millions of Gmail Accounts Linked To Education Program [bbc.co.uk]
Google had prevented adverts from being shown from within GAE's own apps, but the scans could have been used to tailor what appeared when users visited a website using the firm's AdSense platform.
"We've permanently removed all ads scanning in Gmail for Apps for Education, which means Google cannot collect or use student data in Apps for Education services for advertising purposes," wrote Google for Education director Bram Bout on a company blog.