Google has slogged through a wave of bad publicity this year amid revelations that its Street View fleet, the camera-mounted cars that collects curbside imagery for a mapping projects, accidentally collected data about people’s Internet activities. That information, it has since come to light, included whole emails and passwords.
In response, Google has implemented new privacy procedures meant to ensure that product management and engineering teams are both taking pains to protect people’s personal information. That was enough to mollify the Federal Trade Commission, which elected not to take action against Google for the Street View privacy breach. eSecurity Planet takes a look.
The Federal Trade Commission has decided not to take action against Google for the privacy breach that saw the company mistakenly intercept users’ Internet transmissions over unsecured Wi-Fi networks as part of its Street View project.
In a letter to an attorney with the firm Perkins Cole LLP representing Google (NASDAQ: GOOG) in the Street View case, David Vladeck, director of the FTC’s Bureau of Consumer Protection, chided the company for vacuuming up sensitive information, such as email messages and passwords, but acknowledged that the collection was inadvertent and that none of the payload data had been used for commercial purposes.