Austria puts more pressure on Google Street View

By EDRi · June 2, 2010

This article is also available in:
Deutsch: [Österreich erhöht Druck auf Google Street View |]

Austrian Data Protection Authority (DSK) placed a temporary ban on
Google’s Street View cars, The DSK intends to sanction the collection of
private data from unencrypted wifi networks and therefore wants to see
changes to the EU data protection directive in this regard.

“If there is no EU legislation, we are planning a national law,” stated
State secretary for media Josef Ostermayer.

This reaction comes after Google failed to observe the deadline of 27 May
imposed by Germany’s Hamburg data protection authority to hand over such
data that the company admitted to have gathered accidentally by its Street
View system.

Google missed the deadline imposed by the German regulator arguing it needed
more time to consider the possible legal fall-out for sharing such private
data with the government.

DSK said that all collection of data or use of previously gathered
information by Google Street View in Austria would be banned until it
received from Google “a precise technical description of its data-collection
activities by 7 June 2010,” as well as an answer to a detailed

Google is presently under investigation by German prosecutors for
“unauthorised interception of data”, and inquiries have been initiated by
several European regulators while Australia and the US have also initiated
similar probes.

Three U.S. congressmen sent a letter to Google CEO Eric Schmidt asking to
know how much personal data the Internet search engine has gathered with its
Street View project and how it plans to use that information: “We are
concerned that Google did not disclose until long after the fact that
consumers’ Internet use was being recorded, analyzed and perhaps profiled.”

Austria wants sanctions for data gathering after Google ‘accident’

Austria bans Google’s street view cars over privacy (28.05.2010)

Google refuses to hand over German Street View data (28.05.2010)

U.S. Congressmen want more Google Street View information (26.05.2010)

EDRI-gram: Google: We have collected information sent over the WiFi via
StreetView (19.05.2010)