EU says Google must remove Street View images after 6 months

The European Union (EU) has issued a devastating blow to Google saying that they must delete unblurred Street View images after 6 months ; Google’s policy had been that it deletes or updates the photos every 12 months.

According to computerworld.com,“Google holds Street View images for a year but the EU's Article 29 Data Protection Working Party has said the search engine must cut this in half, as 12 months is a ‘disproportionate’ length of time.”

The EU cites concerns about data privacy and that Google needs to be more open about when its vehicles, with cameras attached, would be driving through areas so that citizens could take actions they felt necessary to protect their identities or property.  While Google does have the ability to opt out of being shown on Street View, the EU states that not many people know about it. 

Although if Google does start posting when Street View vehicles will be in certain areas, we can expect a lot more SCUBA divers to chase the vehicle.

As the EU will begin to enforce the stricter policy of Street View images, Google will be forced to either hire more drivers, or no longer cover certain areas as their deadlines for capturing new images has been cut in half. 

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XerXis said,

you have to be american to say something stupid like that

You have to be ignorant to make blanket statements like that.

Hmm I dont see the big privacy or security concern over some pictures taken next to the street. You know they say the average person is on camera how many x's a day, the only difference is you dont know about it. Also your home probably already has pictures taken of it available free online and with much more detail.

Overpaid useless bored money sucking leeches in brussels with nothing better to do than invent idiot rules to justify their pathetic overpaid jobs. I guess aerial photography will have to be banned along with CCTV and all cameras (just in case you happen to take a photo of your grandma in front of someones house). If there was ever an example of how overbearing and brainless a body of people can be, look no further than the european parliament and its hangers on.

Is not having your 'street view' photo taken every six months more of a privacy invasion than having it done every 12 or more? If the data was deleted and had to be recaptured every day that would be extreme - but once every 5 years? Fine. So why is six months - more accurate, up-to-date, more invasive - better than 12 months?

dancedar said,
Is not having your 'street view' photo taken every six months more of a privacy invasion than having it done every 12 or more? If the data was deleted and had to be recaptured every day that would be extreme - but once every 5 years? Fine. So why is six months - more accurate, up-to-date, more invasive - better than 12 months?

Google can leave the images on-line to my understanding... just not keep their original non blurred images on their servers after 6 months.

Once again, this is about the unblurred imagery.

This is a privacy concern because Google having an unblurred photo that shows where various people are for long periods of time isn't justified. For example, say you happen to be walking past a sex shop - you may be blurred out on the online version, but Google have the unblurred version where you are personally identifiable. I think it's fair to say Google doesn't need to keep that for long periods of time.

I trust Google far more than I trust either the EU or the UK government in terms of privacy and having our best interest's at heart.....

maybe they should be looking closer to home, that unelected, non democratic union that is the EU! I'm in the UK, when was I asked - NEVER! jesus!

duddut2 said,
I trust Google far more than I trust either the EU or the UK government in terms of privacy and having our best interest's at heart.....

maybe they should be looking closer to home, that unelected, non democratic union that is the EU! I'm in the UK, when was I asked - NEVER! jesus!

You vote for MEPs. Just like you vote for MPs. You don't vote for the civil service.

And trusting a profit-seeking business over a government? That's just foolish.

Kirkburn said,
You vote for MEPs. Just like you vote for MPs. You don't vote for the civil service.

And trusting a profit-seeking business over a government? That's just foolish.

You don't vote for the European Commission/Council, though. That's where the real power in the EU lies.

Hell, not all of the duly elected MEPs are even allowed to sit in the European Parliament at the moment!

Edited by M2Ys4U, Feb 27 2010, 3:56pm :

I haven't heard many arguments against the European Union that aren't based on exaggerated fears and misinformation.

On the face of it though, this decision seems somewhat excessive. Would be interesting to read the judgement

The solution is very simple. Street view will be available for the either the first or the last 6 months of the year.

sweetsam said,
The solution is very simple. Street view will be available for the either the first or the last 6 months of the year.
AGAIN, this is the unblurred imagery, not the censored versions you see online.


I'm sorry, but the irresponsible manner in which several outlets have reported this news is getting seriously annoying now.

Edited by Kirkburn, Feb 27 2010, 3:41pm :

The EU complaining about privacy? How many cameras are mounted all over the streets watching you in the UK? Theres no privacy. How is it your privacy if people take pictures from the street?

We should all stop moaning and lodge a complaint with the EU Ombudsman explaining that this is not beneficial to European Countries and the MEP's are not acting in our interest passing laws like this.

http://www.ombudsman.europa.eu

Whole news is just wrong.. Nobody has said anything about re-doing whole streetview in every 6 months.. c'mon. It just the time when google has to remove original _unblurred_ version that they have. Do you really thing that google drives every street yearly now?

A whole lot of people seem to not realize that this is about the original Unprosessed images that google hold for them selves, the blurred images we see online are unaffected. This is all about what identifiable data google are allowed to keep, and for how long. This should not be an issue for google (Why would they need the unblurred images?) and it won't be even remotely noticable for us.

I say this is practically non-news...

Why dont they just do an OPT IN policy, instead of intruding on people's privacy, that way they can be 100% sure they have permission to do it, this whole you didnt say no policy is just junk, wait till you get a YES you can do it policy.

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