Newsletters
Technology, Discovery & Innovation NewsFactor Sites:       NewsFactor.com     Enterprise Security Today     CRM Daily     Business Report     Sci-Tech Today  
   
This ad will display for the next 20 seconds. Click for more information, or
Home Computing Digital Life Discovery Space More Topics...
World Wide Web
Average Rating:
Rate this article:  
European Union Scolds Google, May Demand Privacy Policy Changes
European Union Scolds Google, May Demand Privacy Policy Changes

By Jennifer LeClaire
October 15, 2012 11:33AM

Bookmark and Share
Earlier this year, the Article 29 Working party, a European data and privacy watchdog, asked Google to wait to roll out the privacy changes until an investigation found whether the privacy policy conflicted with any European laws. Google went forward anyway. Google has also been approached by Congress in over the same data-consolidation practices.
 



Google is under fire for its privacy policy again. This time around, European Union protection authorities are pointing to legal problems with the search engine giant's privacy policy -- and they want changes made.

Most of the countries in the European Union signed a letter to Google, according to a Reuters report. The letter comes in the wake of France's Commission National de l'Informatique's nine-month investigation.

EU regulators want Google to be more clear about its intentions and methods for combining data collected from its host of services. They also want the Internet giant to ask its users for explicit consent to combine their usage data, Reuters reports.

"Combining personal data on such a large scale creates high risks to the privacy of users," the letter said. "Internet companies should not develop privacy notices that are too complex, law oriented or excessively long."

Google Responds

Of the 27 member EU states, data protection regulators from 24 nations signed the letter. The outliers are Lithuania, Greece and Romania. The EU on Tuesday will decide if Google has breached European law by consolidating its privacy policies in March.

Earlier this year, Article 29 Working party, a European data and privacy watchdog, asked Google to wait to roll out the changes until an investigation found whether the privacy policy conflicted with any European data protection laws. Google went forward anyway. Google has also been approached by Congress in recent months over the same data-consolidation practices.

"Last week we heard from members of Congress about Google's plans to update our privacy policies by consolidating them into a single document on March 1," Google Director of Public Policy Pablo Chavez wrote in a March blog post. "Protecting people's privacy is something we think about all day across the company, and we welcome discussions about our approach. We hope this letter, in which we respond to the members' questions, clears up the confusion about these changes."

Google's Checkered Privacy Past

Google watcher and privacy policy analyst Greg Sterling said it appears the Europeans are going to ask Google to obtain explicit consent from users before being allowed to combine consumer data across platforms and properties.

"That and the finding that Google's privacy policy violated European law is obviously a blow to the company. It will be more challenging for Google to get explicit consent from European users," Sterling told us. "Google will have to do something of a sales job to win their trust and consent."

Google has a history of privacy battles under its belt and it hasn't always come out on the winning end. Last year, Google agreed to settle Federal Trade Commission charges that it used deceptive tactics and violated its own consumer privacy promises when it launched its Buzz social network in 2010. Google's settlement barred the company from future privacy misrepresentations, required it to implement a comprehensive privacy program, and called for regular, independent privacy audits for 20 years.

In April, the FTC hired an outside attorney to help it deem whether to file antitrust charges against the search-engine giant. The FTC has only turned to outside attorneys twice in the past 10 years. Google has not been accused of any wrongdoing.
 

Tell Us What You Think
Comment:

Name:





 World Wide Web
1.   Facebook To Force Use of Messenger
2.   OkCupid Experiments with Daters
3.   Zillow Buys Trulia for $3.5 Billion
4.   Competition Spurs Ultra-Fast Internet
5.   Google Buys Streaming Site Twitch


advertisement
Radical.FM's Freemium Biz Model
Online radio startup asks for donations.
Average Rating:
Facebook Social Experiment Irks Us
Secretive test was legal, but ethical?
Average Rating:
OkCupid Experiments with Daters
Unethical without user consent?
Average Rating:
Product Information and Resources for Technology You Can Use To Boost Your Business

Network Security Spotlight
Canadian Government Charges China With Cyberattack
The government of Canada is not happy with China. Canadian officials have accused "a highly sophisticated Chinese state-sponsored actor" of launching a cyberattack on its National Research Council.
 
Researchers Working To Fix Tor Security Exploit
Developers for the Tor privacy browser are scrambling to fix a bug revealed Monday that researchers say could allow hackers, or government surveillance agencies, to track users online.
 
Wall Street Journal Hacked Again
Hacked again. That’s the story at the Wall Street Journal this week as the newspaper reports that the computer systems housing some of its news graphics were breached. Customers not affected -- yet.
 

Enterprise Hardware Spotlight
Apple Updates MacBook Pros, Cuts Prices Up to $100
The popular MacBook Pro laptop line just got an update and a price cut of as much as $100. The MacBook Pro with Retina display now includes faster processors and double the memory.
 
Watson Gets His First Customer Service Gig
Since appearing on Jeopardy, IBM's Watson supercomputer has been making a living using his super-intelligent knowledge base for business verticals. Now, Watson's been hired for his first customer service job.
 
Tablet Giants Apple and Samsung Feel the Heat
When a company saturates its home market with a once-hot product, expect it to pump up efforts elsewhere. Apple, for its part, is now pushing iPads to big corporations and the enterprise market.
 

Mobile Technology Spotlight
Android 'Fake ID' Puts Millions of Users at Risk
Having this fake ID is nothing to brag about, even if you are a minor. The “Fake ID” Android flaw drops malware into smartphone apps. It can steal credit card data and even take over your device.
 
FTC Wants Fix for 'Perfect Scam' of Mobile Cramming
The U.S. Federal Trade Commission has issued new guidelines to curb “mobile cramming,” a troublesome practice that adds unauthorized third-party charges to mobile phone bills.
 
Facebook: You Will Use Messenger, and You Will Like It
Starting this week, Facebook users with Android and iOS phones will be forced to use the separate Messenger app to send Facebook messages. Pending messages will still be visible in the main app.
 

Navigation
Sci-Tech Today
Home/Top News | Computing | Digital Life | Discovery | Space | Innovation | Health | Science News
Environment
NewsFactor Network Enterprise I.T. Sites
NewsFactor Technology News | Enterprise Security Today | CRM Daily

NewsFactor Business and Innovation Sites
Sci-Tech Today | NewsFactor Business Report

NewsFactor Services
FreeNewsFeed | Free Newsletters

About NewsFactor Network | How To Contact Us | Article Reprints | Careers @ NewsFactor | Services for PR Pros | Top Tech Wire | How To Advertise

Privacy Policy | Terms of Service
© Copyright 2000-2014 NewsFactor Network. All rights reserved. Article rating technology by Blogowogo. Member of Accuserve Ad Network.