Organisationen Privacy International har redovisat resultatet av en studie i vilken 23 företag med onlinetjänster undersökts. Undersökningen gällde hur de olika företagen hanterar integritetsfrågor ur olika aspekter.
Sämst resultat i undersökningen fick Google.
Sämst betyg innebär i korthet ”Comprehensive consumer surveillance & entrenched hostility to privacy”.
Här är anledningarna till att Google fick så dåligt resultat [Via Google OS]:
- IP addresses are not considered personal information. They do not believe that they collect sensitive information.
- Generally poor track record of responding to customer complaints. Ambivalent attitude to privacy challenges (for example, complaints to EU privacy regulators over Gmail). Privacy mandate is not embedded throughout the company. Techniques and technologies frequently rolled out without adequate public consultation (e.g. Street level view).
- Will utilise Doubleclick’s ”Dynamic Advertising Reporting & Targeting” (DART) advanced profiling system.
- Google account holders that regularly use even a few of Google’s services must accept that the company retains a large quantity of information about that user, often for an unstated or indefinite length of time, without clear limitation on subsequent use or disclosure, and without an opportunity to delete or withdraw personal data even if the user wishes to terminate the service.
- Google maintains records of all search strings and the associated IP-addresses and time stamps for at least 18 to 24 months and does not provide users with an expungement option. While it is true that many US based companies have not yet established a time frame for retention, there is a prevailing view amongst privacy experts that 18 to 24 months is unacceptable, and possibly unlawful in many parts of the world.
- Google has access to additional personal information, including hobbies, employment, address, and phone number, contained within user profiles in Orkut. Google often maintains these records even after a user has deleted his profile or removed information from Orkut.
- Google collects all search results entered through Google Toolbar and identifies all Google Toolbar users with a unique cookie that allows Google to track the user’s web movement. Google does not indicate how long the information collected through Google Toolbar is retained, nor does it offer users a data expungement option in connection with the service.
- Google logs search queries in a manner that makes them personally identifiable but fails to provide users with the ability to edit or otherwise expunge records of their previous searches.
- Google fails to give users access to log information generated through their interaction with Google Maps, Google Video, Google Talk, Google Reader, Blogger and other services.
Google säger i en kommentar ”We are disappointed with Privacy International’s report, which is based on numerous inaccuracies and misunderstandings about our services. It’s a shame that Privacy International decided to publish its report before we had an opportunity to discuss our privacy practices with them”
Privacy International hävdar i sin tur att de försökt att kontakta Google utan att få något svar.