Deutsche Welle reports on the latest development in Germany concerning Google’s Street View and other private, online mapping services. Google’s Street View has raised privacy questions in Europe, especially Germany. (Last, several media outlets published stories about privacy questions surrounding Street View.) Now, Deutsche Welle reports:
The German interior minister Thomas de Maiziere has asked internet companies to devise a self-regulatory code to protect web users. He made the announcement on Monday following a summit of politicians, privacy experts and industry representatives in Berlin.
The debate about Google Street View – an online service allowing users to view panoramic images at street level – has led the interior minister to call for the proposed data protection code. The guidelines will force companies to work out how to protect data which could compromise the privacy of individuals. […]
However, de Maiziere recognized that such technology can be beneficial, and said he does not want to give people the right to delete images that can be viewed by the public anyway. He does, however, want service providers to make it clearer how their privacy rights may be infringed by using particular services. […]
If the internet companies cannot decide on a code by December, de Maiziere said the government would immediately intervene in the matter. […]
The head of internet giant Google in Europe, Philipp Schindler, also greeted the suggestion with enthusiasm and agreed his company would work with others to draw up the code.