Google Refuses To Remove Saudi Arabia App Which Tracks Women

Google refuses to ban controversial Saudi govt app

Google refuses to ban controversial Saudi govt app

Google has reportedly rejected calls from US lawmakers to remove a Saudi government app that allows men to control where women travel and offers alerts if and when they leave the country.

Absher allows Saudi users to access government services and also offers features which allow "Saudi men to grant and rescind travel permission for women and to set up SMS alerts for when women use their passports".

Google reviewed the app, which is called Absher, and said that it does not violate any agreements, reported Business Insider. In Saudi Arabia, women can not leave the country without permission from their husbands or fathers.

"The ingenuity of American technology companies should not be perverted to violate the human rights of Saudi women", they wrote.

Following outrage from human rights groups over the app, 14 members of Congress penned down a letter on February 21, asking Google CEO Sundar Pichai and Apple CEO Tim Cook to pull the app from their respective stores.

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If more pushback occurs going forward, the app will likely disappear from both platforms. The app reportedly allows men to track and control the movements of women in the country.

The tech giant says that software allowing men to keep tabs on women meets all of its terms and conditions.

While Google hasn't commented on this decision yet, Apple hasn't commented or taken any action either. This app makes it easier for them to do so.

A London-based non-governmental organization, Amnesty International, has also called on Google and Apple to consider both the cases, comprising the increasing risk of human rights' violence related to women through the App and the other causes a reduction in the chances of harm on women through the App.

The same USA government group that forced Apple to remove the Living Hope Ministry app in December 2018 stated that they will follow up on the matter which will likely lead to Apple and Google being forced to remove the apps from their respective stores.

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