Google Glass spurs privacy questions from Congress

Several congressional members send a letter to Google CEO Larry Page about concerns such as whether Google will use facial recognition technology with Glass.

Shara Tibken Former managing editor
Shara Tibken was a managing editor at CNET News, overseeing a team covering tech policy, EU tech, mobile and the digital divide. She previously covered mobile as a senior reporter at CNET and also wrote for Dow Jones Newswires and The Wall Street Journal. Shara is a native Midwesterner who still prefers "pop" over "soda."
Shara Tibken
2 min read
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Several members of Congress sent a letter to Google to ask about privacy concerns related to Google Glass, including how the company will prevent Glass from unintentionally collecting data without user consent.

"Because Google Glass has not yet been released and we are uncertain of Google's plans to incorporate privacy protections into the device, there are still a number of unanswered questions that we share," the Bi-Partisan Privacy Caucus, led by Rep. Joe Barton (R-Texas) wrote in a letter to Google CEO Larry Page.

Eight members of Congress signed the letter, and they want information from Google by June 14. They cited specific examples of privacy issues in Google's history to support the concerns about privacy.

One question the group wants answered is how Google plans to prevent Glass for unintentionally collecting data about users without their consent. They also want to know what proactive steps Google is taking to protect the privacy of non-users when Glass is in use, as well as whether Google has considered refining its privacy policy. And they're curious to find out how Glass will use facial-recognition technology and how much privacy is considered when approving new apps.

Google Glass has received a lot of buzz, but its capabilities largely are limited at this point. Still, privacy and security are two of the major concerns for Google Glass, and at least one bar has already banned the use of the device. Users could seemingly videotape or photograph others without their knowledge, and it's unclear what provisions are in place to protect users' information, particularly as more developers create apps for the computing eyewear.

(Via AllThingsD)