Did Google sell my search query and email address?

Discussion in 'privacy problems' started by bitbit, Mar 26, 2013.

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  1. bitbit

    bitbit Registered Member

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    Did Google sell, indirectly, my search query and email address?

    Hi, this is my first post here. I'm not a security guru and I don't want to point the finger at Google without some expert input so I'm hoping someone could help. Here is the story.

    I have two email addresses, one, which I'll call private, for my Google accounts and friends, the other for companies and internet registrations.

    I was using Chrome and was logged into my private Google account, I have third party cookies disabled and have run Microsoft Security Essentials.

    I performed a Google search on the poet Dylan Thomas and clicked on and visited two sites in the search results, Wikipedia and poemhunter.com.

    The next morning I found an email in my private address' spam folder:

    From: Dylan Thomas via Linkedin.
    Subject: Dylan Thomas just sent you a private message.

    I find this quite disturbing.

    How did they do this?

    Is Google to blame?
     
    Last edited: Mar 27, 2013
  2. mirimir

    mirimir Registered Member

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    Can you tell whether the email came from Poem Hunter? If you can get the text source for the email, the headers show where it came from.

    If it did come from Poem Hunter, then Google didn't really sell your search query and email address. They just facilitated a followup from a site that you had visited.

    I wasn't aware that Google sells tagged email lists to spammers. However, I wouldn't know, because I would never search while logged into Google ;)
     
  3. bitbit

    bitbit Registered Member

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    Re: Did Google sell, indirectly, my search query and email address?

    This is from the spam email:

    Received: from server38.joeswebhosting.net (server38.joeswebhosting.net. [202.218.108.107])
    by mx.google.com with SMTP id c25si5557857yhe.75.2013.03.22.15.19.58;


    Does this help?

    I'm not suggesting that Google sold my details directly but I have heard that they may pass on the query of a click to paying adsence customers. I didn't think they also passed on uniquely identifiable imformation.
     
    Last edited: Mar 27, 2013
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