Google Earth a security risk claims US general
The general responsible for US intelligence and surveillance in the US Air Force has claimed that online mapping data poses an irreversible threat to US national security.
But while he believes it represents a danger to security he also concedes that it can not be rolled back.
“No one’s going to undo commercial satellite imagery. It’s there” Lt. General David Deptula – deputy chief of staff for intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance – told reporters in Washington.
Deptula cited Google Earth, which gives Web users an astronaut’s view of the earth and allows them to zoom down to street level. He said it had provided anyone with a credit card the ability to get a picture of any place on earth.
“It is huge,” he said. “It’s something that was a closely guarded secret not that long ago and now everybody’s got access to it.”
Asked if the US military might try to implement restrictions or blackouts on imagery of some areas, Deptula said he was not aware of such an attempt.
“I don’t want to speak to specifics, but not that I’m aware of,” he said.
Instead, governments are trying to mitigate the effect through camouflage, concealment and deception, he said, providing no other details.