avg sell browsing data

The popular antivirus company AVG can sell browsing data of every users to any advertiser in order to “make money” from its free antivirus software, a change to its privacy policy has confirmed.

A spokesperson from the company told Wired UK that the company has updated privacy policy and now onwards AVG was allowed to collect “non-personal data”, which could then be sold to third parties.These “non-personal” info include your device’s brand, language and apps in use, among other things. But the company does not specify that this includes browser and search history data.

The new rules will take effect on October 15th, 2015 and by continuing to use AVG after that, you already agree to the collection of browsing data, unless you take the steps to opt out. The spokesperson said that “users who do not want AVG to use non-personal data in this way will be able to turn it off.”And he also told that  in order to continue offering free security software the company may in the future “employ a variety of means, including subscription, ads and data models.”

“Those users who do not want us to use non-personal data in this way will be able to turn it off, without any decrease in the functionality our apps will provide.While AVG has not utilized data models to date, we may, in the future, provided that it is anonymous, non-personal data, and we are confident that our users have sufficient information and control to make an informed choice.” — a spokesperson from the company told Wired UK

But AVG explained that the ability to collect search history data had also been included in previous privacy policies, albeit with different wording.Previous versions of AVG’s privacy policy stated it could collect data on “the words you search”, but didn’t make it clear that browser history data could also be collected and sold to third parties. In a statement AVG said it had updated its privacy policy to be more transparent about how it could collect and use customer data.


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