Google street view is a feature available in Google maps and Google earth. This facility allows you to zoom any street or place to the ground level with a three sixty degree image. Google street view images are taken with a special camera during normal day time hours. These photographs usually contain images of people who are unaware that they are being photographed.
Here comes the problem of privacy and this service of Google is under a sturdy critique. In April 2009 British resident’s community people cut off a Google car that was mapping their area. On this a spokesperson for Google said, “We know that some people are uncomfortable with images of their houses or cars being included in the product, which is why we provide an easy way to request removal of imagery”.
For the above reasons Google was held liable and facing an inquiry.
Connecticut’s Google Probe Draws 37 States
The attorney general of Connecticut said 37 states have joined his investigation of Google Inc. and that he continues to seek information about whether privacy laws were broken when Google’s Street View vehicles collected personal data of unsuspecting Internet users.
The Attorney general has taken strict actions and had sent a letter to Google to reply with the details about the data collected and weather the company has used or sold that information.
Google has confessed that it has been “mistakenly” gathered payload information from open WiFi networks as its Street View cars group around taking pictures. The company said that it never used any information about who was using those networks and what sites they were visiting, but the company has however decided to completely stop collecting WiFi data from its Street View cars.
Google said in an emailed statement, “We’re continuing to work with the relevant authorities to answer their questions and concerns”.
Now to solve the problem Google has hired an Internet Security firm to review the software application. This feature has created a big problem for the company and it is facing inquiry from authorities around the world as well as it has to face civil law suits in U.S.
Google Inc has now decided to restart gathering imagery in four countries for its Street View mapping service.
After discussion with supervisory bodies, the Internet search company will begin driving its cars in Ireland, Norway, South Africa and Sweden, it said on its European Public Policy blog.
No longer wi-fi information will be collected by the cars, but will continue to collect photos and 3D imagery.
So it’s good that this issue has been solved up to some extent and now the Google users will again be able to enjoy Street view service with more privacy and security. So at the end I will only like to say that whatever the problem was but Google is great in providing its services.