INTERNET SEARCH GIANT Google's long running Street View privacy case finally came to an end in the US today, with the firm agreeing to hand over $7m in settlement payments.
Google will pay the $7m settlement to the 38 US states embroiled in the case, which began after it was revealed that Google collected and failed to delete personal data that it gathered using its Street View vehicles during 2008 and 2010 - including things such as emails, text messages and passwords.
The company will also be ordered to get rid of the information it collected using its Street View vehicles, which it claims to have already done, and destroy the equipment it used to collect the data.
In addition, some reports claim that Google must conduct employee training on privacy and confidentiality of user data for at least 10 years. We've contacted the company to confirm this.
"This settlement addresses privacy issues and protects the rights of people whose information was collected without their permission," New York Attorney General Eric Schneiderman said in a statement obtained by the Associated Press.
"Consumers have a right to protect their vital personal and financial information from improper and unwanted use by corporations like Google."
Google also issued a statement. A spokesperson said, "We work hard to get privacy right at Google. But in this case we didn't, which is why we quickly tightened up our systems to address the issue."
"The project leaders never wanted this data, and didn't use it or even look at it. We're pleased to have worked with Connecticut Attorney General George Jepsen and the other state attorneys general to reach this agreement." µ
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