A proportional response? How lawmakers are unwittingly letting Google re-commit the crime

Last week we reported the news that Google had been fined the maximum levy from the CNIL, the French data protection authority, for their continuous violation of privacy regulation across Europe. At the time, Auke Haagsma, ICOMP commented: “the CNIL has levied the maximum possible fine on Google, citing the breadth and seriousness of its … read more

EU Data Protection reform – whither equal treatment.

The EU legislature is entering a crucial phase in discussing the proposal to modernise and update the EU’s data protection rules. A Committee of the European Parliament will seek a way to deal with more than 4000 amendments to the proposal on 21 October while the EU’s Council debated the proposal on 7 October. Although … read more

Business as usual for Google

Today the CNIL (the French data protection authority) confirmed what we had feared: Google has not made any meaningful changes to its privacy policy and still maintains its belief that, in spite of findings to the contrary by enforcers across Europe, it does operate in line with the European Privacy Directive. This refusal to accept … read more

Internet Behaviour Examined

The UK’s Office of Communications (Ofcom) yesterday published a piece of research called “Being online: an investigation of people’s habits and attitudes”, which looks at a number of aspects of online behaviour and examines how citizens and consumers use the internet and interact with online services. The research, undertaken by Ipsos MORI, found overall that … read more

Google’s privacy invasions lead to yet another fine – when will the buck stop?

Yesterday the Data Protection Agency in Hamburg, leading the charge for all German privacy enforcers, fined Google €145,000 just short of the maximum fine of €150,000 for illegally capturing and storing personal data.  Google collected often sensitive personal information through its so-called Google-cars which drove around the streets of Europe and elsewhere to take pictures … read more

Google fails to comply with EU privacy laws. Authorities in six member states decide to take sanctions. Others need to follow.

Today the French Data Protection Authority (CNIL) announced that at least six European Data Protection Authorities (DPAs) will take the investigation into Google’s privacy policy to the next level and are drafting sanctions. Following an investigation led by the CNIL, the so-called Article 29 Working Party found that Google violated EU privacy law and requested on 26 … read more

Against the Goliaths of the online marketplace the law must stand behind David, says Reding

Yesterday the European Commission’s Vice President Viviane Reding addressed the EU Consumer Summit on the issue of enforcement. Ms Reding reaffirmed the vital importance of consumer defences, particularly in times of economic crisis, saying that consumer spending accounts for 56 per cent of the EU’s GDP but that its full potential could only be tapped … read more

Caught again!

Another day, another Google privacy breach. This time no less than 30 US states have taken aim at Google for surreptitiously collecting sensitive personal data sent over their WiFi networks.  According to a press release fromAttorney General Jepsen of Texas, they have not only fined Google, but they have also ordered Google to “engage in a comprehensive employee … read more

CNIL Continues Investigation – UPDATE

On 16th February 2013, France’s National Commission for Computing and Civil Liberties, (CNIL) announced that in response to Google’s Privacy Policy, it would be forming a working group “in order to coordinate their repressive action which should take place before summer”. The probe itself focused on the degree to which the Privacy Policy directly impacts … read more

Consumers back privacy law action against Google

Almost three quarters (71%) of Britons believe that data protection authorities were right to investigate Google’s privacy policies according to a new study by privacy campaign group Big Brother Watch. 66% of respondents went further than this, saying that national regulators such as the Information Commissioner’s Office in the UK should be doing more to force Google … read more