French privacy regulator asks Google for 'deleted' Street View data

Less than a week since U.K. authorities revealed that Google had failed to delete all collected Street View wireless data, France's data protection agency is asking Google to see the data.

Eiffel Tower, Paris
Screenshot by Zack Whittaker/CNET; Source: Google Maps

France's data protection and privacy regulator, the Commission Nationale de l'Informatique et des Libertes (CNIL), has asked Google to hand over data the search giant said it deleted in 2010, but was uncovered by U.K. authorities following a second glance at the case.

On Friday, Google admitted in a letter to European data protection agencies that it had failed to purge all of the payload data it had collected from unencrypted wireless networks, despite claiming it had done back more than two years ago.

Google global privacy counsel Peter Fleischer reiterated that the search giant still had a "small portion" of wireless payload data collected by its Street View cars in the U.K.

The U.K.'s data protection agency, the Information Commissioner's Office (ICO) said on Friday: "The fact that some of this information still exists appears to breach the undertaking to the ICO signed by Google in November 2010."

The ICO said it was "in touch" with other data protection agencies in the EU and further afield.

A week later, the French now want to know what Google knows.

Yesterday, the French regulatory group said it was warned by Google, along with U.K. and other data protection agencies, that some data had not been deleted following "the physical inspection and re-scanning of thousands of disks" used in the Street View cars.

This isn't the first encounter between the CNIL and Google. The CNIL said earlier this year that the search giant's new consolidated privacy policy may breach EU law and could land Google a fine of up to 300,000 euros ($370,000). A decision on the inquiry led by the CNIL will likely wrap up by September, according to earlier reports.

 

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