This fantastic. Honesty and frankness helps build trust. Mistakes happen. How we handle those mistakes is what proves our mettle.
This is a good move to save face, but how can we know for sure that Google is deleting the data? Goofy conspiracy theories aside, I think Google needs to tell us about their new policies, such as what is acceptable and what is not? For instance, can you still go about sniffing traffic? Or is there a condition it is filtered before being stored? The number of potential ways you can violate privacy rights accidentally or otherwise is astronautical, so perhaps for the benefit of clients/customers/whathaveyou (and for the benefit of other companies looking to follow under the banner of "Don't be evil"), Google should share their policies, and educational bits for us to enjoy.
The apology is welcome, but the damage is done. The mantra of "Google is not evil" is now tarnished.
u know, that sounds like pr. sorry. love you, long time, fi dollar, but let us know when you *actually* delete the private data. -- GeePawHill
@Ben Rogers in this case who cares about the privacy of the data? Certainly not the users or owners of the wireless networks in question since they where left wide open. This situation was blown way out proportion, this was not a big deal. If you leave things wide open then anyone can look at your data.
@biaachmonkie: Your response is welcome, but perhaps Google should be educating the public so they don't do such things? Google can afford to spend a cool mil on public awareness I think. The problem today is there's an awful lot of people who don't know better. They must be educated.@Colin: ++. Google is a corporation, just because they're mantra is "Don't be evil" doesn't mean it is not evil.
@GeePawHill: Now that the data has been subpoenaed in many state and country investigations, they can't delete it. They have to keep it until all of the investigations have finished.
I still don't understand why Google implemented a wifi sniffer (gslite?)In none of the news reports or press releases on this matter have I seen an explanation of why this was an accident/mistake.It seems to me that at some level in the design of Google Street View, there was a decision made along the lines of, "Since we're roaming around getting all this information we might as well grab unencrypted wireless traffic as it's open information technically," and now there is a big media fuss they are treating it as a 'mistake.'I am open to the possibility that this wasn't intentional but Google haven't given any explicit detail as to how this has happened and what their original intentions were.
I always lie about everything, so whatever google thinks it has, its not true. :D
@biaachmonkie I agree with you heartily on this one. If they had left the URLs and passwords on a poster board taped to their house then people would be calling them stupid and not blaming Google or anyone else that happened to take a picture of it and post it online.Having an unencrypted, open wireless network is the electronic equivalent of the same. I don't blame Google, I blame the users. Sure, the coders have vetted their work better, but that doesn't mean that Google is to blame for the lack of basic security by the consumers.
Why oh why doesn't someone from Google explain why it was necessary to have a network sniffer and to gather personal data at all, during the street view picture taking exercise? If I want to take a picture of a building there is no need for me to bring along a network sniffer or to be concerned with the network traffic in the area that I'm taking the digital image! I do believe that it is illegal for me to go around my neighborhood sniffing network traffic and gathering data from networks. Secure or not.
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