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Official Says New Google Maps May Violate EU Law


December 17, 2012

A German official has expressed concerns that the location data sharing function within the new Google Maps for iOS may violate European law, Ars Technica reports. Schleswig-Holstein Independent Centre for Privacy Protection Deputy Privacy and Information Commissioner Marit Hansen said the location sharing option is switched on by default and the company’s use of the word “anonymous” in its terms of service is misleading. She said, “All available information points to having linkable identifiers per user,” which led her to state that the company’s “anonymous location data” would be considered personal data in the EU, the report states. Meanwhile, an op-ed notes that Google “is in an ideal position” to “make strong e-mail encryption a mass phenomenon,” which would be a “win-win” for the company. 
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