Google dismissed its Kenya Country Lead Olga Arara-Kimani, along with a “technical guy in Zurich,” over the recent Google-Mocality scandal.
The information is not officially confirmed by Google. However, Kenyan blog NairobiTech reported Olga was “picked for the fall,” because a “sacrificial lamb has to be found for the brand name to weather the storm.”
The firings coincide with a Jan. 27 Google+ post by Europe and Emerging Markets Product and Engineering Vice President Nelson Matto:
We’ve concluded our investigation into the serious allegations about our use of data from Mocality’s website in Kenya. We’re very sorry this happened. We’ve taken appropriate action with the people involved and made changes in our operations to ensure this doesn’t occur again.
More information is available below.
Mocality, Kenya’s largest business directory, criticized Google’s unethical business practices in a blog post dated Jan. 13, when its CEO Stefan Magdalinski discovered the search engine systematically accessed the directory’s database without permission to obtain sensitive sales lead information.
Magdalinski claimed Getting Kenyan Business Online, a Google-backed initiative that offers small businesses free websites for one year, harvested the particulars to contact Mocality customers and pitch Google’s alternative service.
The professional misconduct contradicted the Mountain View, Calif.-based Company’s “Don’t be evil” mantra and tarnished its image within hours of going viral. Matto promptly took to Google+ and apologized, citing he was “mortified” by the events and announced an internal investigation.
These latest sackings may be the result of that investigation, but the former employees involvement in the transgressions remain unclear. Expect an update to this article when Google confirms the details.