UK ICO Slams Google for Breach of Undertaking Signed Over Street View Data - Strikes Antitrust Deal with EU

Google in a letter to the UK's Information Commissioner, confirmed that it had located additional payload data collected by its Street View cars prior to May 2010 and the ICO, which has repeatedly asked Google to delete the extra data, has thrown a few choice words in Google's direction.In the letter, Google said they wanted […]

Google in a letter to the UK's Information Commissioner, confirmed that it had located additional payload data collected by its Street View cars prior to May 2010 and the ICO, which has repeatedly asked Google to delete the extra data, has thrown a few choice words in Google's direction.

In the letter, Google said they wanted to delete the remaining data and asked for instructions on how to proceed.

Steve Eckersley, head of enforcement, at the Information Commissioner Office, wrote in his reply to Google that "he was "grateful" for the information about the data, and noted Google's "commitment to continued cooperation with the ICO on this matter"."

The ICO says "this should never have happened in the first place and the company's failure to secure its deletion as promised is cause for concern." And, this data was supposed to have been deleted in December 2010. "The fact that some of this information still exists appears to breach the undertaking to the ICO signed by Google in November 2010," according to the ICO. Effectively, the ICO has demanded that Google must supply the data to the ICO immediately, so that "we can subject it to forensic analysis before deciding on the necessary course of action."

Peter Fleisher, Google's Global Privacy Counsel, said (via), "Google has recently confirmed that it still has in its possession a small portion of payload data collected by our Street View vehicles in the UK. Google apologizes for this error."

Below, you will find full copy of Goolge's letter to ICO, and the ICO's response:

In other news, according to a recent report, Google and the EU have reached a settlement that that will avoid a legal battle over antitrust claims against Google. The settlement reportedly also extends to mobile search, an issue that emerged late in the talks and threatened to disrupt a potential settlement.

According to Financial Times report, "The breakthrough came after Google said it would in principle extend the remedies it had offered to make for PC-based search to cover mobile search services too."

Google has not confirmed the settlement, but issued the following statement, "We continue to work cooperatively with the European Commission."