Posted in Menacing Monopoly

Google "Street View" has got your number

Too many people naively think that they're anonymous when using the Internet. Truth is, as far as Google is concerned, nobody should be anonymous. The Monster of Mountain View is doing everything it can to make privacy an ideal of yesterday:

Google's roving Street View spycam may blur your face, but it's got your number. The Street View service is under fire in Germany for scanning private WLAN networks, and recording users' unique Mac (Media Access Control) addresses, as the car trundles along.

Germany's Federal Commissioner for Data Protection Peter Schaar says he's “horrified” by the discovery.

“I am appalled… I call upon Google to delete previously unlawfully collected personal data on the wireless network immediately and stop the rides for Street View,” according to German broadcaster ARD.

Schaar might be horrified, but given what we know about how Google operates already, we're not. We're simply not surprised at all.

We have to give Germany propos for having a Federal Commissioner for Data Protection. The United States – where Google is headquartered – really needs one of those. The Federal Trade Commission is a joke. It doesn't keep pace with Google at all. And that allows Google to get away with things like this.