Google's Head Is Officially Back on the Chopping Block For Its Wi-Fi Data Slurp

By Sam Gibbs on at

The Information Commissioner's Office is officially looking into the goings on at Google again. Having seen the American FCC slap big G with a £16,000 fine, the ICO's having stern words over Google's Street View Wi-Fi sniffing.

ICO wants Google to explain precisely why it was slurping data from unencrypted Wi-Fi networks as it was trundling along snapping pictures of British streets. Google's initial defence revolved around a single rogue engineer, which didn't hold water.

Google's also going to have to give up records of when exactly management found out about the data capture ability of its Street View cars, and what it did to plug the leak and eradicate the data.

While all this isn't likely to damage big G's wallet too much, it might get some hefty fines and possibly even some stricter controls on its operations within the UK. OK, it was bad news that Google went out and collected all this data, but if you're using unencrypted Wi-Fi in this day and age, especially in built-up areas, you're almost asking to get hacked. [The Register]