Google has been fined $189,230 by government regulators in Germany. The search giant was in court after it was determined that private Wi-Fi data was being accidentally collected by the company’s street view car cameras.
Street View cars from 2008 through 2010 inadvertently collected data packets from homes and businesses as they passed by buildings and homes.
The German court in Hamburg led by regulator Johannes Caspar decided to reopen the civil lawsuit after prosecutors decided to drop a criminal case over the data breach. Speaking to Bloomberg, Caspar claims that “Google’s internal control mechanisms must have severely failed” in order for the system to collect the data it obtained.
Google’s fine was low-cost because German law limits data violations to 150,000 euros, an amount equal to $195,330. Caspar, in the meantime, believes the violation cost should increase to deter future breaches.
Google’s Street Views program has come under fire all over the world. The data breach was first discovered in the United States, and Google was forced by the FCC to pay a fine of $7 million.
Under terms of the US Wi-Fi data breach, all Google employees must be properly trained in all aspects of data privacy and the confidential nature of user data. The Google training program extends for a full decade.
Google must also provide public service advertising campaigns in the United States to educate Wi-Fi users on how to secure their wireless networks.
Do you think Google should have been fined more for its part in Wi-Fi data breaches throughout Germany?