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Germany's government has informed the companies behind online mapping services that they must come up with their own guidelines on data protection by December or face new regulations, AFP reports. "We need a charter guarding private geographical data and we need it drafted...by December 7," Interior Minister Thomas de Maiziere said after a five-hour meeting between German officials and Internet executives, adding, "A charter could, and I mean could, make regulation superfluous." The meeting between de Maiziere, federal justice and consumer protection ministers, data protection authorities and managers from firms specializing in online mapping was called following a recent outcry over Google's plans to launch its Street View mapping service in 20 German cities.
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