Google to face Wi-Fi data probes… but not in UK
Google could face inquiries from German and US officials following the company’s disclosure it had “mistakenly” collected sensitive data sent by consumers over wireless networks.
However, the UK’s Information Commissioner has said it will be taking no action against the search giant.
Google has admitted that its fleets of cars responsible for photographing streets around the world had for several years accidentally collected personal information – which a security expert said could include email messages and passwords.
One of the largest companies in the world, the market leader on the internet, simply disobeyed normal rules
Peter Schaar, German commissioner for data protection, said the internet giant’s explanation was “highly unusual” and called for a “detailed probe” into the practice, according to a report in the Financial Times.
“One of the largest companies in the world, the market leader on the internet, simply disobeyed normal rules,” the FT cited Schaar as saying.
The paper said the US Federal Trade Commission was also looking to launch an inquiry.
Yet, despite Google having appeared to have broken the UK Data Protection Act, the Information Commissioner’s Office also told the FT that it will be taking no further action against Google, after receiving assurances that the data will be deleted “as soon as possible”.
Google has grounded its fleet of Street View cars and has stated that it will no longer collect any data from Wi-Fi hotspots, which it previously monitored to improve location-based services.