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Google picks up data, threats, investigations, criticisms

Molly Wood Nov 11, 2010
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Google picks up data, threats, investigations, criticisms

Molly Wood Nov 11, 2010
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Governments around the world have been investigating Google for months, threatening everything from sanctions to jail time. Some investigations, including one by the U.S. Federal Trade Commission, have been dropped. Many more continue.

Last week, Representative Joe Barton (R-Tex.) said he thinks the data grab was intentional and he intends to push further investigations into the search giant.

We talk to Danny Sullivan, who runs the site Search Engine Land, about the case. Danny says Google still has the data, including screen names and passwords, because the process of who to hand it over to and/or how to destroy it is still being actively debated.

But as everyone points fingers at Google, let’s remember where this data came from: unsecured wide open wireless networks. Networks that were essentially broadcasting to anyone who cared to take an interest in listening in. Maybe you have one at home.

Google says they got this information on accident. But Chet Wisniewski of the security firm Sophos tells us there are people out there grabbing it very much on purpose. Not just the criminals but even hobbyists called “war drivers” who try to see how much data they can collect. And they don’t even have to be parked outside your house, they can be miles away.

Also in this show, an Australian drinking site was originally called Groggle before Google found out and objected. Now it’s called Drinkle.

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