The fines will be distributed to various US States where the firm has been accused of a data privacy lawsuit. As Google was taking photos for its geolocation service, it collected and stored information such as email and text messages, passwords, and web histories from unsuspecting users over unsecured Wi-Fi networks.
According to New York Attorney General Schneiderman, “Consumers have a right to protect their vital personal and financial information from improper and unwanted use by corporations like Google,” and added, “This settlement addresses privacy issues and protects the rights of people whose information was collected without their permission. My office will continue to hold corporations accountable for violating the rights of New Yorkers.”
Google has accepted to destroy all the data it collected, train its employees on consumers protection and their data security and will also carry out nationwide awareness campaigns on the significance of private user information and as well pay a US$7 million to the affected states.
Google acknowledged that the information it could have collected may have included confidential or private user information from people’s homes in the event of the Street View cars service.
The firm has also disabled and or removed any equipment or software from the Street View cars and is no longer capable of collecting any user information, according to the settlement.