European regulators may reopen Google Street View investigation

John Moe May 3, 2012

Remember what happened to the beast in the song Hotel California? They stabbed it with their steely knives but they could not kill the beast. Who are they? Henley and Frey, presumably. I can’t imagine Joe Walsh participating in something like that.

Anyway, the Google Street View data collection story is that beast. Shan’t die. Google recently disclosed that an engineer intentionally installed software that collects data from unsecured home wi-fi hotspots.

That’s making European regulators consider re-opening an investigation into the matter.
Quoth the New York Times:

All the overseas reviews except two in Germany — one regulatory, one criminal — were settled after Google apologized and blamed an error by the programmer for the incident.

“We had been told that it was a simple mistake,” said Johannes Caspar, the data protection commissioner for Hamburg, whose investigation first brought the illegal collection of Internet data to light. “But now, we are learning that this wasn’t a mistake and that people within the company knew this information was being collected. That puts it in a totally different light.”

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