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Greece grounds Google's Street View fleet

No more snooping pending 'additional information'

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Google's Orwellian Street View snoopmobiles have been banned from prowling Greece's highways and byways, pending the search monolith coughing "additional information" as to just what it's up to.

The country's Data Protection Authority issued the edict yesterday, according to AFP, simultaneously suspending a similar all-seeing web operation by ISP Kapou showing streets in Athens, Larissa and Thessaloniki.

Whether the Greeks ultimately succeed in protecting their citizens from Google's global ambitions remains to be seen. In the UK, the powers that be have evidently bowed to the inevitable following the launch of Blighty's Street View earlier this year.

Following complaints regarding invasion of privacy, the Information Commissioner's Office (ICO) recently cleared the service under the Data Protection Act, declaring: "In a world where many people tweet, Facebook and blog it is important to take a common sense approach towards Street View and the relatively limited privacy intrusion it may cause."

This didn't go down too well with campaigners. London-based Privacy International called for a complete overhaul of the ICO, and thundered: "The gloves are now off. After ten years of failed complaints and undermining by that office of the core data protection principles, we have decided that there is no further point in trying to educate the officials there." ®

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