Can the egg be unscrambled?

Google’s cleverly constructed undertaking actually hides the fact that the largely cosmetic changes only apply to Google’s stated policy, not to the real practices that apply to its multitude of services.  Those practices will continue to foray into the privacy of its users.  That would not be a problem if users had genuine alternatives.  They … read more

Google’s Invisible Web

More than two years ago the Article 29 Working Party, on behalf of Data Protection Authorities across Europe, concluded that Google’s updated privacy policy breached European data protection laws on numerous grounds. Throughout the intervening two years, Google has continued to illegally combine users’ data. Yesterday the Dutch data protection authority became the latest European … read more

Google Still Refusing To Recognize Privacy Rights; ICO Intervenes

Earlier this week, the UK Court of Appeal heard yet another argument from Google as the company seeks to avoid liability for illegally accessing personal data by hacking the Apple Safari browser.  But the case took a new twist this week, as the UK Information Commissioner’s Office (ICO) — the body responsible for protecting the … read more

Why Data Matters

It is hard to imagine that any undertaking that has been found to contravene the law would then continue to operate as if nothing had happened. Incredibly, this is the scenario European citizens find themselves facing with Google’s privacy policy. Two years ago this month the Article 29 Working Party, on behalf of Data Protection … read more

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