Google is being investigated in Australia for allegedly collecting customer data

With the number of Android users in Australia around 10 million, if Google were to pay to collect their data, the price tag at current data costs would be somewhere between $432 and $540 million annually. Oracle has now openly reported the matter to the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (ACCC), which is investigating the case.

The probe followed information supplied by USA software company Oracle, which reportedly told the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (ACCC) it believed Android devices transferred up to a gigabyte of data, including detailed location information, every month to Google.

"We investigate how users know about the use of their location data, and work closely with the Privacy Commissioner", said Geesche Jacobsen, a spokesman for the competition regulator.

Transferring that information to Google means using up gigabytes of data that consumers have paid for under data packages purchased from local telecom service providers, according to the Oracle report.

Google and Oracle have always been engaged in a range of legal battles, and now, the latest iteration is playing out in Australia, where Oracle has successfully convinced competition and privacy regulators to look into how Google allegedly tracks its Android phone users.

Reuters was unable to immediately verify the content of the Oracle report. "Most consumers do not understand the level, granularity, and reach of Google's data collection".

The Android phones relay the location of the nearby cell towers to Google, without the necessary consent given by the user, the allegation states.

U.S. tech firm, Oracle claims that Google is snooping on Australian mobile subscribers.

Google says users are also able to control what ads they receive.

"We are aware of the reports in the media and we have asked Google to advise whether they are accurate", a spokesman for Australia's biggest telecom company Telsta said.

The investigation will also raise questions about how large technology companies collect and use consumer data online.

Oracle has its own long-running dispute with Google.

Between adaptive brightness and more flexible audio options, Android P is giving users more ways to create a truly personal smartphone experience.

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