Google Street View back on the road

Google's Street View cars will be collecting photos and 3D images in Ireland, Norway, South Africa and Sweden this week.

Google

Google will restart its Street View photo and 3D image collecting in various countries this week, not long after the Wi-Fi data collection scandal broke.

Earlier this year, Google admitted it had mistakenly collected personal data being sent over Wi-Fi networks through its Street View cars. The company subsequently came under heavy criticism from various parties.

Having spoken to the relevant regulatory bodies, the search giant confirmed it will now be sending out vehicles in Ireland, Norway, South Africa and Sweden.

Google stated it will not collect any Wi-Fi information whatsoever and Wi-Fi data collection equipment has been removed from the Street View cars.

Furthermore, Google brought in the help of independent security firm Stroz Friedberg, which has approved a protocol ensuring any Wi-Fi related software and hardware is removed from the vehicles before they hit the road.

Google now expects to get its Street View cars going in other countries soon.

"We recognise that serious mistakes were made in the collection of Wi-Fi payload data, and we have worked to quickly rectify them," said Brian McClendon, vice president of engineering at Google Geo, in a blog post.

"However, we also believe that Street View is a great product for users, whether people want to find a hotel, check out a potential new home or find a restaurant."

Just last week Google was forced to apologise to Australians for collecting unsecured Wi-Fi payload data. It has also been told to carry out a Privacy Impact Assessment on any new Street View data collection activities in the country that included personal information, which will then be handed over to the Australian privacy commissioner.

"Maintaining people's trust is crucial to everything we do and we have to earn that trust every single day. We are acutely aware that we failed badly here," said Alan Eustace, senior vice president of engineering and research at Google, in a separate blog post.

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