Google Plus Profile Data Litigation – a SCAM?

Did you recently receive an email from with a subject line that reads “Notice of Class Action Settlement re Google Plus“? If so, you may be wondering if it is a legitimate email or a fraud. This brief post will solve the mystery.

First, if the email indeed came from (double check this), then it is not a scam. It’s an authentic communication from You have received this email because you are a Settlement Class Member in CASE NO. 5:18-CV-06164-EJD (VKD) filed in UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT NORTHERN DISTRICT OF CALIFORNIA and you may be able to receive a payment.


In 2018, Google announced that their Google+ social platform had experienced bugs since 2015, allowing app developers to access certain Google+ profile field information.

Plaintiffs (people who filed this lawsuit on behalf of a putative class of Google+ users who were allegedly harmed by the software bugs):

  • Matthew Matic
  • Zak Harris
  • Charles Olson
  • Eileen M. Pinkowski

While Google denies the allegations and claims that no one was damaged by the software bugs, they have agreed to pay $7.5 million which will be used to fund:

  1. Class Member Settlement payments – If you submit a Valid Claim, you may receive a pro rata share of the Net Settlement Fund up to a cash payment of $12.00 depending on the number of claimants by Electronic Payment (Paypal or Digital Check).
  2. Attorneys’ fees not to exceed $1,875,000 which is 25% of the Settlement Fund and reimbursement of costs and expenses in the approximate amount of $200,000.
  3. Four service awards to the Class Representatives in an amount not to exceed $1,500 each for their services on behalf of the Settlement Class and for a general release of all claims they may have against Google.
  4. Administration fees and costs – The costs of providing notice and administration of the Settlement.
  5. Cy pres distribution of any residual funds – Any residual funds remaining after payments to Settlement Class Members will be distributed to Approved Cy Pres Recipients as approved and directed by the Court.

Terms of the Settlement

Google has agreed to create a Settlement Fund of $7,500,000, which will be used to provide compensation to:

  • Settlement Class Members
  • pay for notice and administration costs
  • provide for any approved Service Awards to the Class Representatives who filed the case
  • compensate the attorneys for any approved fee, cost, and expense awards.

If the Settlement is finally approved, Settlement Class Members will be prevented from bringing any further claims against Google for any conduct relating to the software bugs affecting Google+ profile fields.

I did not receive an email. Can I submit a claim?

You may submit a claim if you

  1. live in the United States
  2. had a consumer Google+ account for any period of time between January 1, 2015 and April 2, 2019
  3. had your non-public Profile Information exposed as a result of the software bugs Google announced on October 8, 2018 and December 10, 2018
  4. are not a Google officer, director, employee, subsidiary, or affiliate
  5. are not a judge or part of the staff assigned to this case (or a member of their immediate families)
  6. are not a part of the parties’ counsel in this litigation
  7. are not an Excluded Class Member

Important Dates & What Are Your Options

October 8, 2020 — Exclusion (Opt Out) Deadline, Objection Deadline, and Claim Deadline

In order to receive your payment, you have to submit a Valid Claim by October 8, 2020. By receiving the payment, you’re also giving up your rights to sue Google and/or any other released entities regarding the legal claims in this case. You may also mail your Claim Form to the following address:

Google Plus Data Litigation
1650 Arch Street, Suite 2210
Philadelphia, PA, 19103

If you would prefer to hire a lawyer and sue Google, then you have until October 8, 2020 to opt out of the settlement. You may also submit your completed Opt-Out Form via e-mail to or via postal mail to the following address:

Google Plus Data Litigation
Attn: Opt-Out Requests
P.O. Box 58220
Philadelphia, PA, 19102

If you neither submit a claim nor opt out of the settlement, then you will not receive any payment while being bound by the Settlement’s terms, which entails losing the right to sue Google.

There’s a forth option too. You may write to the Settlement Administrator about why you do not like the Settlement or via postal mail to the following address:

Google Plus Data Litigation
Attn: Settlement Objections
P.O. Box 58220
Philadelphia, PA, 19102

The deadline is October 8, 2020 here as well. Your objections will be shared with the Court, but you will also be bound by the Settlement’s terms and will not be allowed to exclude yourself from the Settlement, losing the right to sue Google.

You may object to any aspect of the Settlement, including commenting on the applications for Class Representative Service Awards or the award of attorneys’ fees, costs, and expenses.

Any Objection must be in writing and must:

  • Clearly identify the case name and number, In re Google Plus Profile Litigation, Case No. 5:18-cv-06164-EJD.
  • Include the full name, address, telephone number, and email address of the person objecting.
  • Include the full name, address, telephone number, and email address of the Objector’s counsel (if the Objector is represented by counsel).
  • State whether the objection applies only to the objector, to a specific subset of the Class, or to the entire Class, and also state with specificity the grounds for the Objection.
  • Be verified by an accompanying declaration submitted under penalty of perjury or a sworn affidavit.

Final Fairness Hearing

According to, the final approval hearing on the adequacy, reasonableness, and fairness of the settlement will be held at 9:00 am on November 19, 2020 in:

San Jose Courthouse, Courtroom 4 (5th floor)
280 South 1st Street
San Jose, CA 95113

While attendance is not obligatory, you are welcome to join.

Class Counsel will answer any questions the Court may have.

If you submitted an Objection, then you will have an option to appear and request to be heard at the Final Fairness Hearing, either in person or through counsel.

If you choose to make an Objection through an attorney or have an attorney appear at the Final Fairness Hearing on your behalf, you will be obviously be responsible for paying that attorney’s fees.

Important Documents

A list of important documents can be found here, including:

  • Claim Form – Downloadable PDF Version
  • Profile Field List
  • Settlement Notice
  • Order Granting Preliminary Approval of Class Action Settlement
  • Settlement Agreement
  • Motion For Preliminary Approval of Class Action Settlement
  • Consolidated Class Action Complaint
  • First Amended Class Action Complaint
  • Class Action Complaint

Contact Information

Settlement Administrator:

Google Plus Data Litigation
1650 Arch Street, Suite 2210
Philadelphia, PA, 19103

PHONE: 1-833-509-1101

Your and other Settlement Class Members’ representing lawyers are:

To access the Court docket in this case, use the Court’s Public Access to Court Electronic Records (PACER) system.

You may also visit the office of the Clerk of the Court for the United States District Court for the Northern District of California at:

280 South 1st Street, 2nd Floor
San Jose, CA 95113

Hours: 9:00 am – 4:00 pm, Monday through Friday, excluding Court holidays.

The Angeion Group

The Privacy policy at is written by the Angeion group ( How are they related to this case?

Apparently, Angeion Group are the ones handling this claim. They are the Settlement Administrator for that case.

They define themselves as “the one-stop-shop for all your litigation tasks. From court reporting to e-discovery and settlement administration, Angeion seamlessly uses technology, thoughtful consulting and best-of-breed best practices to let attorneys do what they do best.”

The Angeion Group’s contact information is:

1650 Arch Street, Suite 2210
Philadelphia, PA 19103

So Not a SCAM?

Perhaps it’s not a scam, but it may definitely be a waste of your time.

Don’t get us wrong. It’s a great deal for the lawyers handling the case who will be raking in millions. The plaintiffs will also get a nice $1.5K each. But the rest of us?

No more than $12. Probably less.

As one person commented, “Lining the lawyers pockets is the only point. Typical of these class action suits.”

Also, what about Google Plus users who do not live in the US? Why do they not deserve a compensation for breach of their data?

Some people are worried about having to add their bank account or PayPal address to the claim.

Don’t be worried though. The more money us simpletons claim, the less is left for them greedy lawyers.

Ideally though, file an objection. If enough people do, maybe we could get a bit more than $12…

What are you going to do? Share in a comment below.


  1. Lord Iheanacho

    Scam or not, this is the most pathetic settlement ever!

  2. Bonnie

    Doing nothing since no one can confirm this is legit. Not giving my bank account number in anyway; checks are mailed for all the class action suits I’ve been involved in. I’ve never been asked for a paypal account (warning!) or bank account (warning!) for payment. Not. Once.

  3. SRM

    It’s not worth $12 to give up my right to sue Google.

  4. JMA

    I’m going to keep a copy of this ridiculous lawsuit so I can give my granddaughter an example of true idiocracy.

  5. Myra J Karlson

    I do not want to give out my banking information.

  6. cmg

    I worried this was a scam when the confirmation came in my SPAM file.

Comments are closed