Google halts deletion of Street View Wi-Fi data

    Date24 May 2010
    3917
    Posted ByAnthony Pell
    Google has stopped deleting the personal data its Street View cars collected from open Wi-Fi networks, following what the company called "some uncertainty" over the deletion process. For three years, Street View cars collected Wi-Fi payload data across 30 different countries. Some countries have asked Google to delete the data - and in some cases, it has complied - while others have requested that the data be kept for the time being. One country, according to Google, asked that the data be retained after it had requested deletion.

    Google's decision to retain all remaining data also comes after UK-based watchdog Privacy International said it would complain to the police if the company didn't stop deleting data by Monday - and after the EU requested a halt to the deletion.

    "On the instructions of the Irish data protection commissioner, Google destroyed all Wi-Fi data relating to collection in Ireland," read an open letter from Privacy International to the European privacy commissioners earlier this week. "This action has the effect of removing any chance of further legal action of investigation. The action could be seen as collusion to destroy evidence."

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