Google has had access to a tool that helps it track what online ads led to a sale in a physical store in the U.S. for the past year, which was made possible because Google paid for Mastercard transactions.
Bloomberg reported that Mastercard cardholders aren’t aware of this tracking as the two companies never informed them.
Alphabet Inc., parent company of Google, and Mastercard struck a partnership in 2017 after four years of negotiations, giving Google the ability to measure retail spending, according to Bloomberg.
Google allegedly paid Mastercard millions of dollars for the data and the two companies discussed sharing a portion of the ad revenue.
“Before we launched this beta product last year, we built a new, double-blind encryption technology that prevents both Google and our partners from viewing our respective users’ personally identifiable information,” a spokesman for Google told Bloomberg. “We do not have access to any personal information for our partners’ credit and debit cards, nor do we share any personal information with our partners.”
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