Feb 9, 2014
In part because it's still in the appeal process, Google attempted to fight the order, which specified a large-text notice right below the front page's search buttons. "Google has always maintained that page in a virgin state," said attorney Patrice Spinosi. France's top administrative court, however, upheld the decision on Friday. Other companies have been required to post similar notices in Europe; Apple, for example, was required to tell visitors that it lost a UK lawsuit against Samsung but landed in hot water for excessive editorializing. CNIL looked for ways to multiply the fairly low maximum privacy violation fine, and this is a way to make sure deep-pocketed Google feels its effects.Read Article >
Nov 29, 2013
Sep 27, 2013
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Jun 20, 2013
The CNIL also said that data watchdogs in Germany, Italy, the Netherlands, Spain, and the UK are considering similar actions against Google, which could result in more sanctions and fines.
Apr 2, 2013
Apr 1, 2013
Google has confirmed to The Verge that lead privacy director Alma Whitten will be leaving the company after 10 years. Software engineering director Lawrence You, who's been with the company eight years and is a founding member of Google's privacy team, will be taking over the job. A Google spokesperson said in part "Alma has done so much to improve our products and protect our users." But Whitten leaves behind a mixed record as Google's privacy director, especially in recent years, when the company ran into trouble with governments around the world for practices deemed disconcerting at best and violations at worst.Read Article >
Feb 18, 2013
EU regulators gave Google four months to change its policies last October, and the French privacy regulator leading the EU's investigation said that the company "did not provide any precise and effective answers." Reuters reports that the EU's action this year will begin with the creation of a working group to coordinate EU data protection authorities. No action beyond "a further inquiry" has been announced.
Oct 16, 2012
While the report recognizes the legality of data combination in some fields, it claims that Google is in violation of EU data protection regulation in cases 2, 4, 6, and 8 as there is "no valid consent" from users. This data combination violates the "fundamental rights and freedoms of the data subject," and if Google wants to continue collecting data in this manner it "should seek consent from the data subjects" for these specific purposes and provide additional controls for its users to manage what data Google collects.
Apr 25, 2012
That's great — all web services should be subject to harsh scrutiny of their privacy policies — but a close and careful reading reveals that Google's terms are pretty much the same as anyone else's, and slightly better in some cases. Let's take a look.
Apr 5, 2012
Of vital interest is how Google plans to share information it collects on users, something that has garnered attention from US lawmakers as well. The CNIL asked 21 separate questions on the topic in its questionnaire, none of which were addressed in Google's current letter. We shouldn't have to wait too long to hear Mountain View's thoughts, however: according to Reuters, Google will be answering the rest of the questions by April 15th.
Mar 1, 2012
Google also explained that the company has "undertaken the most extensive user education campaign in our history" to inform users of the privacy changes, though Reding believes that those efforts have not been enough. She said that 80 percent of citizens in the UK, for example, are concerned about the new conditions, while privacy group Big Brother Watch stated that only 47 percent of those citizens are aware of the agreement and just 12 percent have actually read it. Despite requests to delay the changes, Google's new policy has been put in place today. While the EU hasn't announced its plans for dealing with the policy, France's National Commission for Computing and Civil Liberties will be sending Google a questionnaire early this month to provide further clarification on the changes.
Mar 1, 2012
While the company insists it isn't selling your personal data to others or "collecting any new data," most of the criticism over the new policy boils down to concerns over how Google is handling the personal information it is collecting. Those concerns range from whether consumers are adequately informed about the specific personal information and access rights they're surrendering when they use Google's services, to the implications of Google's richer data profiles — particularly as they relate to hacking and identity theft.
Feb 29, 2012Read Article >
Feb 28, 2012Read Article >
Feb 23, 2012
Feb 3, 2012
In its statement, the group said that it wishes to "check the possible consequences for the protection of the personal data of these citizens in a coordinated way" and that the group is calling for "a pause in the interests of ensuring that there can be no misunderstanding about Google's commitments to information rights of their users and EU citizens." Al Verny, Google's spokesperson in Brussels, noted that Google was a bit surprised by the request, since it briefed most members of the working party prior to the public announcement of its changes. However, the company is still "happy to speak with any data protection authority that has questions" — note that he didn't say Google was happy to delay its new policy, which is still scheduled to go into effect on March 1st.
Feb 2, 2012Read Article >
Feb 1, 2012
Google also takes a moment to call out Microsoft for its fear-mongering ads at the end of the blog post, noting that it doesn't make judgements about other companies policies or controls, unlike Google's friends in Redmond. However, Google doesn't shy away from throwing some mud back back by noting that Microsoft doesn't offer any data liberation or dashboard services for users to see all the personal information they've committed to Microsoft's services. While Google's trying to hard to lay fears to rest, it wouldn't surprise us if there's more controversy between now and March 1st.
Feb 1, 2012
Jan 31, 2012
Chavez is quick to assuage a number of potential fears in the post. He assures users that their private information will remain private, that many tasks will still be available without a Google account, that the centralized privacy tools like Google Dashboard and Ads will remain in place, that Google will not sell data to third parties, and that if users are unhappy then the Takeout service is still available to those who would rather leave.
Jan 27, 2012
Google has until February 16, 2012 to deliver a satisfactory response to Congress, but it's already addressing concerns about some changes through its Public Policy Blog. The post clarifies that Google has already been using data to improve the user experience for a long time, and the new policy simply makes that clear. "We're not collecting more data about you," the company said, adding that you still have the option to turn off chat and search history, "go incognito," or tailor ads to your interest.
Jan 24, 2012
The update comes after some complaints and accusations that Google has been unfairly promoting search results, especially in regards to the recent integration of Google+ results in the new "Search, plus Your World" feature. According to a New York Times source, Google denies that the recent complaints made the company change its policies.