Growing pressure from the EU – Google ordered to change privacy policy or face legal action

Google Privacy
Google Privacy

EU watchdogs in Germany and the UK have demanded that Google rewrite its privacy policy – which underwent major changes last year that involved the amalgamation of 60 privacy policies for its various products into one – or face legal action. The moves follow similar probes in France, Italy and Spain regarding transparency over Google’s handling of user data.


In Germany, the Hamburg Commissioner for Data Protection and Freedom of Information has commenced formal action against Google and given the company until mid-August to make its case.

Additionally, the Information Commissioner’s Office (ICO), an independent UK privacy protection authority, wrote to Google yesterday demanding clarification on how its updated privacy policy will affect the usage of individual data across the search giant’s products and whether it complies with the UK Data Protection Act.

Google must now amend their privacy policy to make it more informative for individual service users. Failure to take the necessary action to improve the policies compliance with the Data Protection Act by 20 September will leave the company open to the possibility of formal enforcement action.

In a statement that we’ve all heard before, Google has insisted that its “privacy policy respects European law. We have engaged fully with the authorities involved throughout this process, and we’ll continue to do so going forward.”

As Google receives a wave of ultimatums, it’ll be interesting to see whether the search engine can stand firm with its privacy policy or will have to cave to growing pressure from authorities across the EU.

Image credits:
featured image – flickr user opensourceway

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