Police raid Google’s Korean offices over data gathering

10 Aug 2010

Police have raided Google’s offices in South Korea to investigate whether Google’s Street View cars were collecting data from unsecured Wi-Fi networks in the country,.

Google is understood to be cooperating with the investigation.

South Korea joins a number of countries around the world, including Germany, the UK and certain States in America that have launched investigations into Google’s Street View data gathering after unauthorised software was used to gather data from Wi-Fi networks.

Google’s Street View cars are alleged to have intercepted data activity on unguarded Wi-Fi networks in the US and in many European countries, including Ireland, raising a myriad of data privacy issues.

In Europe, large nations like France, Germany and Spain have asked Google to hand over the data it collected. A French enquiry found that some of the data collected by Google included passwords and other sensitive material.

Ireland’s Data Protection Commission simply told the search giant to destroy the data.

In Ireland the Google Street View cars made their return in July, only this time things will be a little different, the company said. The cars will no longer be collecting Wi-fi data.

John Kennedy is a journalist who served as editor of Silicon Republic for 17 years