REPORT: Google Lets App Developers Scan People’s Emails

(Photo by Lionel BONAVENTURE/AFP/Getty Images)

Daily Caller News Foundation logo
Eric Lieberman Managing Editor
Font Size:

Google has reportedly been letting software developers scan the emails of millions of people who use Gmail, the tech company’s popular proprietary communications service.

Some of these companies, like Return Path, collect certain data from those who have downloaded one of its free apps and give it to marketers, according to an article published Monday by The Wall Street Journal.

Google said its own computers would stop reading personal communications in order to create a targeted ad system because of privacy concerns in June 2017. By allowing others to continue the practice, it’s likely that many would still consider Google a tech giant that doesn’t care about keeping people’s data and correspondence confidential, at least enough. (RELATED: Google, Facebook Are Super Upset They May No Longer Be Able To Sell Your Internet Data)

The practice of permitting, even empowering companies to analyze such personal information apparently isn’t that unfounded.

It’s a “common practice,” Thede Loder, the former chief technology officer at eDataSource, a competitor to Return Path, told TheWSJ. “Some people might consider that to be a dirty secret. It’s kind of reality.”

TheWSJ said it discovered Google’s deal with outside app developers by interviewing “more than two dozen current and former employees of email app makers and data companies,” making it curious as to if or why Google thought this was going to be kept hush.

Google only gives data to those it has thoroughly investigated and trusts, the company told TheWSJ. Internally, only the data and emails that are pursuant to a case of alleged abuse or a bug can be read or perused.

Google did not respond to The Daily Caller News Foundation’s request for comment in time for publication.

Follow Eric on Twitter

Send tips to

All content created by the Daily Caller News Foundation, an independent and nonpartisan newswire service, is available without charge to any legitimate news publisher that can provide a large audience. All republished articles must include our logo, our reporter’s byline and their DCNF affiliation. For any questions about our guidelines or partnering with us, please contact