Hashtag Trending, May 31, 2021 – $600M class-action lawsuit against Google; Iran bans cryptomining; Google’s collection of location data

A lawsuit against Google gets class-action status, Iran bans cryptomining after rolling blackouts, and unredacted documents show Google made it hard to keep location data private.

It’s all the biz/tech news that’s popular right now. Welcome to Hashtag Trending!  It’s Monday, May 31 and I’m your host Alex Coop.

Four women suing Google for pay discrimination just had their lawsuit upgraded to a $600m class action from technology

A lawsuit led by four female Google ex-employees claiming the ad giant pays men higher wages for doing the same job was granted class-action status last week. Judge Andrew Cheng of the Superior Court of California in San Francisco, said the plaintiffs – Kelly Ellis, Holly Pease, Kelli Wisuri, and Heidi Lamar – can not only proceed against Google but also represent more than 10,800 women who may have also been unfairly paid less than their male colleagues at the internet titan. According to The Register, the women’s complaints were filed in 2017, seeking damages from Google that could now grow to $600 million given its status. The women argue Google violated the California Equal Pay Act, and failed to pay them their full wages after they quit or were dismissed.

Iran Bans Crypto Mining After Months of Blackouts from technology

At a cabinet meeting last Wednesday, the President of Iran Hassan Rouhani said that enormous amounts of illegal bitcoin mining has been sapping a mind-blowing 2 gigawatts of power each day from an already-stressed electrical grid. Gizmodo is reporting that around 4.5 per cent of the world’s total bitcoin mining now takes place in Iran, making it one of the top 10 bitcoin-producing countries in the world. The country is also a hotbed for illegal mining thanks to miners taking advantage of the country’s subsidized energy.

Google made it nearly impossible for users to keep their location private from technology

And lastly, Business Insider is reporting that unredacted documents in Arizona’s lawsuit against Google show that company executives and engineers were aware that the search giant had made it hard for smartphone users to keep location information private. It also turns out that Google collected location data even after users had turned off location sharing. They also made privacy settings difficult for users to find. Insider says that the documents even show that because the settings were popular with users, Google had pressured phone manufacturers into keeping privacy settings hidden. A Google spokesperson told The Verge that the lawsuit and the people driving it have “gone out of their way to mischaracterize our services. We have always built privacy features into our products and provided robust controls for location data. We look forward to setting the record straight.”

That’s all the tech news that’s trending right now. Hashtag Trending is a part of the ITWC Podcast network. Add us to your Alexa Flash Briefing or your Google Home daily briefing. Make sure to sign up for our Daily IT Wire Newsletter to get all the news that matters directly in your inbox every day. Also, catch the next episode of Hashtag Tendances, our weekly Hashtag Trending episode in French, which drops every Friday at 3 pm. Thanks for listening.

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Jim Love, Chief Content Officer, IT World Canada
Alex Coop
Alex Coophttp://www.itwc.ca
Former Editorial Director for IT World Canada and its sister publications.

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