London, UK: The Information Commissioner’s Office (ICO) in London announced that it would reopen an investigation into Google Inc., requesting detail on what its Google Street View vehicles collect. This announcement follows the US Federal Commission probe into Google’s Street View mapping data.
“Please list precisely what type of personal data and sensitive personal data was captured within the payload data collected in the UK,” Steve Eckersley, the head of enforcement at the ICO, wrote in a letter to Google Senior Vice President Alan Eustace and made public by the ICO.
The ICO is an independent UK authority set up to uphold information rights, promote openness by public bodies and data privacy for individuals.
Eckersley asked the company to confirm at what point Google managers became aware this type of data were collected by their Street View vehicles in the UK, and what measures were introduced to limit that collection.
The ICO also asked for a ‘substantial explanation’ as to why this type of data weren’t included in the watchdog’s previous request for Google in 2010 to provide information on its street-mapping activities.