Alex Turk, head of EU data protection agencies, has written a letter to Google to urge the search giant to better protect the privacy of people who are photographed by the Street View service. Turk urges Google to reduce the time it keeps the original photos from one year to six months, and says Google should give people advance notice that they may get photographed, by publishing the information on the web, and by announcing it in local or national media.
The head of EU data protection agencies, Alex Turk, told Google's data privacy chief Peter Fleischer in a letter dated Feb. 11 that the company should always give advance notice on its Web site and in the local or national press before it takes pictures.
It should take care to avoid taking pictures "of a sensitive nature and those containing intimate details not normally observable by a passer-by," Turk said.
He also said that the company should revise its "disproportionate" policy of keeping the original unblurred images for up to a year, saying improvements in Google's blurring technology and better public awareness would lead to fewer complaints — and a shorter delay for people to react to the photos they see on the site.