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India sets up an expert panel to review Google Earth related security issue

Google Earth launched a couple of months ago posed a security problem for many countries worldwide. Many countries complained to the company asking them to remove some of their strategic locations from the imagery available from this software. Related to this the Indian government has now decided to take serious action and have setup an expert group to review such products available in the market. This group would also suggest the government on taking steps to get rid of potential security dangers from these applications. The head of India’s principal mapping organization, surveyor-general of India Major-General Gopal Rao, told the Hindusthan Times that the government could ask the US headquartered company to reduce the resolution of images of sensitive locations or even blur the details. “This is something that’s technically feasible, something that Google has done for the US government,” said Rao. V.S. Ramamurthy, secretary, Science and Technology Department, was non-committal. He said the expert group would look into all related issues. “The group will also study what other countries have done,” said Ramamurthy.

Hindusthan Times, 2nd January 2006