Germany Questions Google's Data ''Accident''

Last week Google revealed that it had unintentionally collected WiFi data from open routers using its Google Street View cars. The data was only discovered when the German Data Protection Authority asked to audit the WiFi data collected by the Google Street View team. Google said that up until the time of the audit, it had been under the impression that it was only collecting MAC addresses and SSID information. However, the audit showed that Google had been collected fragments of payload data from open WiFi networks. Data collected by Google included emails and web addresses users were viewing. Google said that it would be deleting all of this extra data and said a third party would be brought in to ensure this was done in the correct manner.

However, it seems Peter Schaar, Germany's federal commissioner for data protection, and freedom of information, is not satisfied with Google's story.

"So everything was a mistake, a software bug! The data was collected and stored without the authorization of the project's managers or even the company's managers. If we go along with this story, this means the software was used without having been properly tested beforehand," he said, according to TGDaily.

Indeed, Germany is not the only country who has found issue with Google's behavior. The Irish Data Protection Authority Friday contacted Google and asked that all data accidentally harvested in Ireland be deleted. Google today confirmed that this Irish data was deleted over the weekend in the presence of an independent third party.

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17 comments
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  • JD13
    What a crock of BS! What was their intention of collecting any data other than street view pictures in the first place?
    1
  • amnotanoobie
    JD13What a crock of BS! What was their intention of collecting any data other than street view pictures in the first place?


    It's not like they were trying to crack into your router. Now if you did leave your router wide open, then it is probably the user's fault. In such a case, scrupulous individuals could just walk by your house and start hacking away. Such individuals would do more harm than google could ever do.
    4
  • DjEaZy
    ... in this one...
    http://www.tomsguide.com/us/Google-Street-View-Google-Maps-maps-streetcar,news-6807.html
    ... i had this post...
    'Google's street view cars had been accidentally collecting data from open WiFi networks??? Yeah... right...'
    ... it seems, i'm not alone in this one... the big google is watching you...
    1