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This is evil: Google employees accessing competitor’s database to poach customers

By Mauricio Freitas, in , posted: 14-Jan-2012 18:39

This is evil. A business trying to poach customers by accessing data from a competitor, and cold calling - even saying they are working with said competitor?

Since October, Google's GKBO appears to have been systematically accessing Mocality's database and attempting to sell their competing product to our business owners. They have been telling untruths about their relationship with us, and about our business practices, in order to do so. As of January 11th, nearly 30% of our database has apparently been contacted.

Furthermore, they now seem to have outsourced this operation from Kenya to India.

When we started this investigation, I thought that we'd catch a rogue call-centre employee, point out to Google that they were violating our Terms and conditions (sections 9.12 and 9.17, amongst others), someone would get a slap on the wrist, and life would continue.

I did not expect to find a human-powered, systematic, months-long, fraudulent (falsely claiming to be collaborating with us, and worse) attempt to undermine our business, being perpetrated from call centres on 2 continents.

Very bad. Unethical even. And by Google no less.

Now, it' should be obvious this is not how some companies conduct business, but most likely the actions of a rogue overachiever. I hope this person gets a well deserved boot but surely there would be controls. Someone should know what was going on. Where does the bucket stops?

Shame.

UPDATE: according to The Guardian, Google admits having accessed Kenyan rival's database and apologises.



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Mauricio Freitas
Wellington
New Zealand


I live in New Zealand and my interests include mobile devices, good books, movies and food of course! 

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