Amid controversy, Google Street View gets approval in UK
Despite strong apprehension from EU legislators toward Google's Street View mapping technique, the UK Information Commissioner's Office has reportedly found Google's privacy safeguards acceptable and will allow the company's roving 360 degree cameras to record British streets for its mapping service.
The level of detail captured on Google Maps Street View has caused a great deal of concern among UK privacy advocates, some of whom feel the service breaks data protection laws.
That sort of concern is not limited to Europe, as American advocacy groups and individual citizens have repeatedly voiced similar complaints. Even the U.S. military has had to push Google off its property.
However, thanks to automatic identity obfuscation techniques (aka blurring of faces and license plates) and the ability for users to have their images removed from street level coverage, the EU's Data Protection Supervisor Peter Hustinx expressed confidence in Google's data protection.
That confidence was echoed by the Information Commissioner's Office this week, which said, "It is clear that Google are keen to capture images of streets and not individuals."