Recently, Google made an announcement via their blog stating they will be permanently removing any form of ad scanning for applications associated with education users. Google was quick to point out that they never intended to collect data in education based Apps, and in the past, an Admin on campus would have had to enable the ad scanning. However, even if the admin had enabled ad scan, it will no longer be enabled within their environment.
To give you a brief overview of the ad scan, it is a blind algorithm that Google uses to scan your email and usage to provide you with more targeted advertisements based on your information.
The new Google policy is as follows:
“Google Apps for Education services do not collect or use student data for advertising purposes or create advertising profiles.
Gmail for consumers and Google Apps for Education users runs on the same infrastructure, which helps us deliver high performance, reliability and security to all of our users. However, Google Apps is a separate offering that provides additional security, administrative and archiving controls for education, business and government customers.
Like many email providers, we do scanning in Gmail to keep our customers secure and to improve their product experience. In Gmail for Google Apps for Education, this includes virus and spam protection, spell check, relevant search results and features like Priority Inbox and auto-detection of calendar events. Scanning to provide product features is done on all incoming emails and is 100% automated. We do NOT scan Google Apps for Education emails for advertising purposes.
Additionally, we do not collect or use any information stored in Apps for Education users’ Google Drive or Docs (or Sheets, Slides, Drawings, Forms) for any advertising purposes”
Great news for business based Google Apps users too: this policy will be carried over to these Apps in the near future. Google was quick to point out that it had permanently disabled this feature on all logged in K-12 users last year.