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Thursday, February 28, 2013
European Regulators To Take Action Against Google


European privacy authorities will take measures to curb Google's collection, combination and storage of its users' personal information.

According to the French National Commission on Computing and Liberty (CNIL), European data protection authorities (DPA) have decided to continue their investigation into Google.

In October 2012, the regulators highlighted deficiencies in Google's privacy policy and gave some recommendations to Google on how to address these. CNIL, the French DPA leading the investigation, says that Google has not taken any precise measures in response to those recommendations so far.

The national data protection authorities of European Union countries, meeting as the Article 29 Working Party (A29WP), decided on Tuesday to agree with the proposal made by CNIL last week - to continue their investigations in close cooperation and to take all necessary actions according to their competences and powers.

A taskforce led by the The French DPA (CNIL) will help to coordinate these actions. The taskforce will meet in the coming weeks and will invite Google for a hearing.

Significant progress on these actions will be made before summer, CNIL said.

European DPAs have been critizing Google's policy changes announced on March 1, 2012. According to DPAs, Google should stop combining information from different sources when it is not legally justified, provide users with more information about its policies and guarantee to delete personal data after set periods.

Google claims that its privacy policy respects European law and allows the company to create "simpler, more effective services."

Google is not the only company having problems in Europe. In a seperate case, European competition regulators seems to be ready to fine Microsoft in April for its refusal to offer European consumers a choice of rival browsers in the Windows 7 operating system.


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