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Google Fired Worker After Customer Breach

Published on September 15, 2010
by Amir Efrati

Google Inc. (GOOG), which has been battling government regulators over its collection of personal data, said it fired a software engineer following a breach of its customers’ private information.

Bill Coughran, Google’s senior vice president of engineering, said in a blog post Tuesday that engineer David Barksdale was “dismissed” for “breaking Google’s strict internal privacy policies.”

Mr. Barksdale was a engineer in Google’s Seattle office who allegedly accessed information of several users who were minors, a company spokeswoman said. Mr. Barksdale could not be reached for comment. Gawker Media LLC reported on the incident earlier on Tuesday.

The move became public on the same day that the Mountain View, Calif., company said it plans to infuse its core products with elements of social networking, and called on Facebook Inc. to give it greater access to user information with its users’ permission.

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