Paris – France has fined Google (NASD: GOOG) a record $142,000 for
violating the country’s privacy laws by collecting information from citizens’
home wireless networks while driving the country’s streets taking photographs
for its Street View service, Agence-France Presse (AFP) reported.
acknowledged last year that it had inadvertently captured data such as
citizens’ passwords and emails, while its Street View cars were out
photographing streets for its mapping service.
France’s National Commission for
Information Freedom (CNIL) told AFP the fine against Google was the largest
sanction it had imposed since being empowered to do so in 2004.
privacy agency also alleged that Google had received economic benefits from the
illegal data collections.
"As we have said before, we are profoundly sorry
for having mistakenly collected payload data from unencrypted WiFi
networks," Google’s lawyer for privacy issues, Peter Fleischer, told AFP.