Wednesday, August 11, 2010

ROK authorities view Google's Street View with suspicion

It looks like South Korea is the latest entity to take issue with the pictures-from-the-street feature of Google Maps. And by taking issue I mean raiding their offices. As Seoul authorities are wont to do.

From CNET:
The Korean National Police Agency confirmed the probe of the search giant in a statement sent to Reuters and other news sources.

"[The police] have been investigating Google Korea LLC on suspicion of unauthorized collection and storage of data on unspecified Internet users from Wi-Fi networks," the agency said in the statement. "We began the probe after having confirmed that the company seized and kept open data as well as unauthorized private communication data collected by its special data-collecting vehicles."

The agency added that Google specifically kept information on users grabbed through Wi-Fi networks for around six months until May, according to The Wall Street Journal (subscription required).

On its end, Google has acknowleged the probe.

"We can confirm that the police have visited Google Korea in conjunction with their investigation around data collection by Street View cars. We will cooperate with the investigation and answer any questions they have," Lois Kim, a Google Korea spokeswoman, said in a statement sent to CNET.

Google has been facing a host of lawsuits and government investigations after it revealed that its Street View service had inadvertantly collected information from Wi-Fi networks as it traveled various landscapes snapping photos. The company has maintained that it did nothing illegal since the data collection was done accidentally and without its knowledge or intent.
Inadvertently. Yeah, I'll bet.

Hmm... Although South Korea has sometimes weird and inconsistently applied rules on privacy, I'm sorta glad someone is coming along to put the brakes on what might otherwise be a wholesale jump toward Big Brother, or at least a lot of Little Brothers.

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3 comments:

  1. Maybe a few National Assembly members are afraid of this?

    http://www.mid-day.com/news/2009/apr/010409-London-Google-Street-View-British-wife-extra-marital-affair.htm

    Who knows what lurks when City View goes into the alleys of Cheongnyangni?

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  2. You are dropping the ball this summer as this is sure to be the next world-wide pandemic with especially dire consequences for South Korea due to the love of cosmetic surgery here.

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  3. Damn, this was the scariest thing that I've seen in quite some time. This "Vaccinations" episode of Bullshit really needs to be seen by the masses.

    Here, Penn goes to town on the defrocked doctor who fabricated the link to autism and the MMR vaccine that started it all. The actual episode details his real reason for doing it though.

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