Avast under investigation for selling user browsing data

By Staff reporter | 15 Feb 2020 at 16:18hrs
Czech authorities have launched an investigation into the practices of anti-virus software company Avast.

In an official announcement from the Czech Office for Personal Data Protection, authorities said that Avast is being investigated over allegations of selling data on the browsing activities of its users through its Jumpshot division.

President of the Office Ivana Janů said that it is currently collecting information on the case.

"There is a suspicion of a serious and extensive breach of the protection of users' personal data. Based on the findings further steps will be taken and the general public will be informed in due time," Janů stated.

Detailed browsing for sale

An investigation by Motherboard and PCMag revealed that Jumpshot had supposedly been selling detailed browsing history information.

This could include web searches on Google, location searches on Google Maps, visits to LinkedIn pages, specific YouTube videos, and interactions on porn websites.

Avast is used to collect the data, after which Jumpshot repurposes it into products which are sold to clients.

According to the reports, potential clients included large corporations like Google, Microsoft, McKinsey, Pepsi and Yelp.

Avast has since announced that it will shut down Jumpshot.



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