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South Dakota receives $4.2M following Google privacy settlement

The Google logo is seen at the Google headquarters in Brussels. This week, Google is changing the way its influential search engine recommends websites on smartphones and tablets in a shift that's expected to sway where millions of people shop, eat and find information.
Virginia Mayo
Google logo (file)

South Dakota is getting a multi-million-dollar payout following a massive settlement with Google over its location tracking practices.

Attorney General Mark Vargo said South Dakota along with 39 other states reached a $391 million dollar settlement with the tech giant. South Dakota’s share is $4.2 million.

The states sued Google over the company’s use of location data to target ads based on people’s physical location. Investigators said this sometimes happened even when users asked Google not to track them.

In addition to the financial agreement, the settlement requires Google to be more transparent with consumers about its practices. That includes giving users more detailed information about the types of location data it collects.

Vargo said this is the largest multi-state attorney general settlement in U.S. history.

Josh Chilson is the news director at South Dakota Public Broadcasting. A Florence, S.D. native, Josh graduated with a journalism degree from South Dakota State University. He has worked as a newspaper reporter and videographer, and most recently as managing editor for Dakota News Now. Josh is based out of SDPB's Sioux Falls studio.