Uh-Oh: Feds Say Google ‘Systematically Destroyed’ Evidence for Years by Auto-Deleting Employee Chats

Google’s reliance on commonly used messaging systems that automatically delete conversations after a day has landed the company in hot water with the Department of Justice.

In a filing Thursday evening, the DOJ accused Google of using so-called “history off” communications that they say “routinely destroyed” written communication after 24 hours. Some of those destroyed chats, the DOJ alleges, may have discussed “sensitive topics.” That’s a bad look as the tech giant faces not one, but two antitrust investigations by the nation’s leading law enforcement division.

“For nearly four years, Google systematically destroyed an entire category of written communications every 24 hours.” the DOJ alleges.

These “history off” chats—also referred to as off the record chats—allegedly occurred on Google Hangouts and instant messages. To Google’s credit, anyone who uses Google communications, even outside the company, has the ability to have their communications automatically deleted after 24 hours. Not everyone is under investigation from the feds though. In its filing,the DOJ claims Google use of history of chats, maliciously or not, may run afoul of laws requiring companies to preserve communications for litigation.

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Author: HP McLovincraft

Seeker of rabbit holes. Pessimist. Libertine. Contrarian. Your huckleberry. Possibly true tales of sanity-blasting horror also known as abject reality. Prepare yourself. Veteran of a thousand psychic wars. I have seen the fnords. Deplatformed on Tumblr and Twitter.

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