Taskforce of European data regulators to target Google over privacy changes

2 Apr 2013

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Internet giant Google could face a bevy of massive fines after it emerged that at least six European data-protection commissioners could take co-ordinated action over its privacy practices. More than a year ago, Google revised its privacy policy, sparking investigations by various data-protection authorities.

A taskforce of agencies led by France’s National Commission for Computing and Civil Liberties (CNIL), as well as regulators from the UK, Germany, Italy, Spain and the Netherlands, have announced they are to take steps against Google over its failure to fix flaws in its new privacy policy.

The new privacy policy at Google, which was revealed last year, will see it revise 70 different policies into one terms of service document.

France’s CNIL has concluded its own investigation and has found that the search giant has not implemented any significant compliance measures.

“It is now up to each national data-protection authority to carry out further investigations according to the provisions of its national law transposing European legislation,” CNIL said.

The UK’s Information Commissioner (ICO) said today: “The (EU) Article 29 working party’s analysis is finalised. It is now up to each national data protection authority to carry out further investigations according to the provisions of its national law transposing European legislation.

“Consequently, all the authorities composing the taskforce have launched actions on 2 April 2013 on the basis of the provisions laid down in their respective national legislation,” the ICO said.

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Editor John Kennedy is an award-winning technology journalist.

editorial@siliconrepublic.com