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Posted by on Dec 16, 2012 in Internet |

Google Maps for iOS could violate European rules on data protection

Google Maps for iOS could violate European rules on data protection

After the fiasco of the maps of Apple, it was suspected that the launch of Google Maps for iOS ** ** would be a success and, the truth is that the forecast has been more than fulfilled that after being released Wednesday by night has crowned as one of the most downloaded applications for users. By now no doubt of Google’s dominance in this segment and the strength of its service, however, the Independent Centre for Privacy Protection of Germany has sounded the alarm , warning that, in his view, Google Maps could violate EU rules on personal data protection.

Does for iOS contravenes European law personal data protection? What is the problem? The charge of making these statements has sio Marit Hansen during an interview and in it, the representative of this watchdog said the application, by default, has enabled the collection of user data from Google and it is this fact which conflicts with EU legislation on personal data.

When you first start the Google Maps app for iOS, users see a message indicating that data is collected from users, anonymously, to be sent to Google and that also could be stored in the terminal. While the purpose is to “improve the service”, according to Hansen commented on the interview, this option is checked by default and most visible is the button “Agree and Continue”, meaning that if the user does not realize accept this fact has inadvertently too. According to Hansen, the anonymous use of the data is somewhat misleading since the information can be linked to some users and track their movements, therefore, no longer anonymous and become personal data based on the European regulatory framework .

These data, therefore, be regarded as personal data. When Google collects data on routes flown, is collecting personal data for those who should obtain explicit consent. [...] The only thing that can make this process a checkbox consent and pre-market is not enough.

Perhaps these statements may seem somewhat exaggerated but not the first time Google is viewed with suspicion in Germany (remember the collection of Wi-Fi with Google Street Map) and that data is used anonymously is a promise by Google that, of course, you must believe and assess whether to agree. The problem is that although the user can stop sharing your data when deemed appropriate, the default option is active and therefore the user chooses Google (just happened to Microsoft with Internet Explorer 10 and activation Do not Track defect that raised a stir).

If the matter goes to higher and end up speaking German authorities or any Community body may be the possibility of an upgrade of the application to clarify the process of data collection but, in my opinion, you should also be aware of the terms accept and assume good practice to read the terms and conditions of the services you use.

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