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Google agreed to pay $22.5 million on Thursday to resolve Federal Trade Commission (FTC) charges that it bypassed privacy settings in Apple’s Safari browser to serve targeted advertisements to users, and breached a previous policy settlement with the consumer protection agency.
The fine is the largest civil penalty ever enforced by the commission.
TechCrunch reports that the penalty centered on the fact that Google abused a loophole in Safari to place cookies on its customers’ computers even though, by default, the web browser blocks cookies from third-party sites.