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MP: Data Protection Act Limited ICO Powers

PRIVACY LAW—UK

October 29, 2010

The Information Commissioner's Office (ICO) was prevented from taking stronger action during its review of data collected by Google Street View cars due to limitations within the Data Protection Act, the Guardian reports. Meanwhile, Metropolitan police have announced it would not be appropriate to launch a criminal investigation into the issue. The ICO has since been given extra powers, including the ability to fine organizations up to £500,000 for "serious breaches of the Data Protection Act," but a spokesman confirmed that because the breach occurred before that change, "even if it was appropriate, we would be unable to use this enforcement power on this occasion." Culture Minister Ed Vaizey is scheduled to meet with Information Commissioner Christopher Graham on the issue next week.
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