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Brazil Orders Google To Hand Over Street View Data

samzenpus posted about 5 months ago | from the take-it-back dept.

Google 130

cold fjord writes "France 24 reports, 'Brazilian judges gave US Internet search giant Google until Saturday to turn over private data collected through its Street View program ... Failure to do so would mean a daily fine of $50,000, up to a maximum of $500,000. ... According to a complaint from the Brazilian Institute of Computer Policy and Rights (IBDI), the car-borne software also enables Street View to access private wi-fi networks and intercept personal data and electronic communications. IBDI pointed to similar occurrences in other parts of the world and demanded that Google reveal if it had engaged in such practices. It said Google had admitted collecting data while insisting they were not used "in its products and services. The US search engine stressed that it had now removed the data collection software from its vehicles."'"

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130 comments

Google's response (5, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 months ago | (#45383281)

... Failure to do so would mean a daily fine of $50,000, up to a maximum of $500,000. ..

Oh! We are sooooooo scared!

Re:Google's response (0)

JustOK (667959) | about 5 months ago | (#45383307)

After 10 or 12 years, that might add up to something they would notice.

Re:Google's response (2)

vakuona (788200) | about 5 months ago | (#45383397)

Which part of "up to a maximum of $500,000" did you not understand?

Re:Google's response (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 months ago | (#45384149)

Which part of "up to a maximum of $500,000" did you not understand?

What part of math do you not understand? The number part, or the number part?

Takes a shitload of fines at the pathetic thousand level to even remotely put a dent in a pile that is billions high.

Re:Google's response (1)

Jane Q. Public (1010737) | about 5 months ago | (#45384847)

"Which part of "up to a maximum of $500,000" did you not understand?"

What really makes this a joke is that sorting out and turning over the data could actually cost them almost as much.

You mean erasing the incriminating evidence ... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 months ago | (#45385493)

.... not sorting?? Right??

Re:Google's response (3, Informative)

master_kaos (1027308) | about 5 months ago | (#45383405)

"up to a maximum of $500,000"
So just pay $500,000 up front and continue operating as normal.

Re:Google's response (1)

JWSmythe (446288) | about 5 months ago | (#45384401)

That's what I'm thinking.. Paying out $500k for images and whatever data they can collect is worth it to them. Hell, if that's the cost, it would be worth it for them to capture absolutely everything they can while driving. Why limit to images and wifi? They should make the street view cars broad spectrum receivers.

Re:Google's response (2, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 months ago | (#45383415)

It is maximised to just 10 days. The cost of handing over the data as instructed would already be higher than that.

Re:Google's response (2)

houstonbofh (602064) | about 5 months ago | (#45383557)

Actually, it was more like "No problem. As soon as we get those drives back from the NSA we will ship them right to you."

Is google even capturing WiFi data anymore? (1)

hsmith (818216) | about 5 months ago | (#45383329)

I thought they abandoned that practice after the last debacle.

Re:Is google even capturing WiFi data anymore? (4, Interesting)

PolygamousRanchKid (1290638) | about 5 months ago | (#45383517)

I thought they abandoned that practice after the last debacle.

I thought they wouldn't work with the NSA after they said they wouldn't.

The WiFi data is far too useful to the NSA for Google to stop collecting it for the NSA.

Cheap karma whoring's cheap. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 months ago | (#45384199)

Oh yeah, those random seconds of random WiFi streams are rather useful both for Google and NSA.

Of course, government agency _must_ do everything ineffectively, but this kind of data is much easier collected from ISPs, no need to only pick those stupid enough to use plain unencrypted WiFi - and if you've followed the news, ISPs're quite willing to do that, both in US and abroad, thanks to NSA colleagues.

PS: Couldn't get a fourth "NSA" in there, really?

Re:Is google even capturing WiFi data anymore? (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 months ago | (#45384207)

I thought they abandoned that practice after the last debacle.

I thought they wouldn't work with the NSA after they said they wouldn't.

The WiFi data is far too useful to the NSA for Google to stop collecting it for the NSA.

Exactly. Which is why every fucking Android phone in the known universe reports back all it's WiFi information to Google anyway.

The practice hasn't stopped. It just became legal and got buried in the EULA you ignore anyway.

Re:Is google even capturing WiFi data anymore? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 months ago | (#45384513)

Unless you, you know, turned that feature off. Are you too dumb to have turned it off?

Yet another government... (4, Insightful)

msauve (701917) | about 5 months ago | (#45383407)

which thinks it can regulate the laws of physics.

If you don't want people receiving the wireless signals you broadcast, either don't broadcast them, or shield them so they don't escape. If you only care about the content, encrypt them.

Re:Yet another government... (1)

BringsApples (3418089) | about 5 months ago | (#45383519)

This bounces the blame off onto router manufacturers. Plug-and-play shouldn't be something that routers are capable of, but so many people don't want to understand every little thing about a router, they just want their internet, now. They're tired of having to call their nephew/grandson/son (or the female version of all said) to configure everything, so they try to do it themselves. The router manuals never discuss the implications of setting up the router in the default manner. Once granny is able to connect to the internet, she's so damn proud of herself (and worried about pressing a button to break it all again) that she never wants anyone to touch it again. Neither do her neighbors.

Routers should come with wireless off, and that's that.

Re:Yet another government... (1)

msauve (701917) | about 5 months ago | (#45383623)

Then Granny has a problem, because there are people with intentions much more evil and much more secretive than Google who will be sniffing her wireless.

Re:Yet another government... (2)

BringsApples (3418089) | about 5 months ago | (#45384101)

Not sure if you're driving my point further or what. The problem with Google being able to sniff wireless, is due to the wireless being turned on, and no encryption being turned on. To me, this is a problem for common folks, because of the ability for large companies to drive around taking advantage of there being common folks. It's no different than bullying.

Take Aaron Swartz's case into mind, and compare that to what Google did. Not much difference to me, except for the fact that Aaron did something that's very common to do, just used 'wget' to do it, whereas Google had to drive around the world.

Re:Yet another government... (2)

msauve (701917) | about 5 months ago | (#45384931)

Google was simply building a location database which associated WiFi MAC addresses with GPS coordinates. The easiest way to do that is simply pcap WiFi while recording GPS coordinates and timestamping both, for post-processing. It takes extra effort to only grab control traffic, ignoring the data. For their purposes, it doesn't matter if encryption is on or not. Although they would have gathered traffic for unencrypted networks, that's not what they were interested in.

Re:Yet another government... (3, Interesting)

zippthorne (748122) | about 5 months ago | (#45385139)

And why should setting up a router be complicated? Why can't I just put my laptop next to a router, push a button on one or the other or both and have them securely paired via near-field or EHF wireless, photometer, ultrasound, or physical link?

Most people aren't IT professionals, but do need some IT infrastructure to accomplish their own goals. The mass-produced products should take this into account and offer default options that are both easy and secure.

Re:Yet another government... (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 months ago | (#45383811)

This bounces the blame off onto router manufacturers. Plug-and-play shouldn't be something that routers are capable of, but so many people don't want to understand every little thing about a router, they just want their internet, now. ...

If there were clear instructions for setting up a router (or small network) that showed what actions work with the hardware and different software "layers of abstraction", then, routers could be shipped with WiFi off and most anyone capable of reading could install one. As it is now, I often have trouble getting things to work (network printer is the latest headache) because of some setting hidden in an obscure menu or other location.

Can anyone point to a complete and transparent/useable set of networking documentation? I'm not even sure what it would look like--perhaps a series of flow charts? One chart for each level, with a way to check that things are connected and/or set correctly on that level, before moving to the next level?

Re:Yet another government... (1)

dabbaking (843108) | about 5 months ago | (#45384491)

The problem is that people are lazy. Most people I know don't even read manuals anymore, and you think you're going to get them to look at flow charts? People are able, just not willing to do the more advanced setup when they can just plug it in and be done. Also, if you look at the admin panels on routers it's a maze and I know most people would just give up on the first screen. For example, I have a Buffalo router and the first thing I see Router Name/Model then MAC addresses, Radio, Mode, Channel, TX Power, etc. Most people don't know WTF this stuff is and as long as the thing works they're not going to care.

Re:Yet another government... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 months ago | (#45384595)

The problem is that people are lazy. Most people I know don't even read manuals anymore, and you think you're going to get them to look at flow charts? ...

Of course, if I plug it in and it works, then I'm not going to mess with it. On that score, I'm sure I also count as lazy. And I appreciate the effort that was required to make the "magic" work.

But when it doesn't work (ie, connecting up a new computer to use a network printer), and there isn't any useful documentation, then I claim the manufacturer (or software supplier--MS in this case) is the lazy one. It doesn't have to be a flow chart, but it does have to be complete and organized so that logical, step-by-step, debugging is possible. When I watch kids fix network problems, 9 times out of 10 they just try shit faster than an ordinary user.

Back in CP/M and DOS days, things were not quite as complex, and the instructions were good. As systems got more complex, the manufacturers got lazy and gave up on writing decent docs.

Fucking Retard (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 months ago | (#45384685)

I want the router to "just work". Mine does. I plugged it in, and clicked "linksys" on my phone. It worked, just the way I want it to. Mild annoyance to change the default password, but beyond that, it just worked. Not at all like AT&T's where I have to bury my nugget to read the encryption key that's in fine print on the far side of the router that they installed in the TV stand. The NSA can read my internet without my router broadcasting it.

Re:Yet another government... (2, Insightful)

Joining Yet Again (2992179) | about 5 months ago | (#45383551)

This isn't about whether people can receive signals, numbnuts - it's about what people can do with the signals they receive.

I know the USA is the poster boy for entitlement, but shouting MAH FREEDOMZ! does not get you a free pass to do anything you want, unless perhaps you choose to exit the society which keeps you safe and warm.

Re:Yet another government... (1)

msauve (701917) | about 5 months ago | (#45383591)

Starting right out with ad hominem simply discredits any minor point you may have been trying to make.

Re:Yet another government... (3, Funny)

Joining Yet Again (2992179) | about 5 months ago | (#45383761)

ad hominem is using a personal insult to support an argument.

I'm describing the flaw in your argument AND calling you numbnuts. Think of it like a bonus free gift.

Re:Yet another government... (2)

gl4ss (559668) | about 5 months ago | (#45383699)

most privacy laws are in place to protect information you're going to have to give out anyhow, otherwise your phone company is going to sell all your data... because gee, why use a phone company for data you don't want them to sell.. geez.

Re:Yet another government... (1)

msauve (701917) | about 5 months ago | (#45383727)

The phone company is a poor example. They make use of public rights-of-way for private commerce, and are subject to regulation in exchange.

Re:Yet another government... (1)

rogoshen1 (2922505) | about 5 months ago | (#45384635)

You know, I have a theory about phone companies (cox voice in this case) I think they sell or find a way to 'share' personal data about subscribers with telemarketing partners.

Wife and I made the mistake of getting Cox Voice because it was cheap, and being able to send/receive a fax is nice (google voice has too much jitter to really be reliable for faxing). Within 5 minutes of having the handset connected, the telemarketing calls started flooding in. Some of which knew our names and address. (this was an 'unlisted' number.) In a given day, we still get around 15-20 telemarketing calls.

All this despite being at the current address for less than 6 months, and moving from out of state.

Re:Yet another government... (2)

StripedCow (776465) | about 5 months ago | (#45384279)

If you don't want people receiving the wireless signals you broadcast, either don't broadcast them, or shield them so they don't escape. If you only care about the content, encrypt them.

So, when in public, we should all speak in a secret language if we don't want our conversations to be recorded and sold by big corporations?

Re:Yet another government... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 months ago | (#45384335)

Pretty much, yes. Haven't you seen those sites that exist totally off of candid video and security camera footage?

Re:Yet another government... (1)

msauve (701917) | about 5 months ago | (#45384959)

Why do you artificially limit it to "big corporations?" Are you fine with anyone but big corporations recording and selling your conversations? Perhaps you simply shouldn't discuss things in public which you don't want to be public.

Re:Yet another government... (1)

grumpy_old_grandpa (2634187) | about 5 months ago | (#45386155)

What always puzzles me when that thread of arguments is repated, is that one aspect is left out: scale. In my opinion, the technical details of wifi, or even the fact that electronics is involved at all is completely irrelevant.

So yes, feel free to listen in on my conversations in public. However, if you decide to do so to everybody, everywhere, all the time, it doesn't matter whether you well intended, malicious, Google, or NSA. To me, you're the same enemy of society, privacy and democracy.

Huehiehuehuehue (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 months ago | (#45383411)

Gibe data pls
I report u

Huehuehuehue

Brazil aims low, film at 11 (3, Funny)

girlintraining (1395911) | about 5 months ago | (#45383457)

$500,000? To one of the biggest companies on Earth? They spend more than that on coffee. Go big or go home, Brazil. :)

Re:Brazil aims low, film at 11 (2)

Gravis Zero (934156) | about 5 months ago | (#45383507)

$500,000? To one of the biggest companies on Earth? They spend more than that on coffee. Go big or go home, Brazil. :)

that's just how the preexisting law is written, dummy.

Re:Brazil aims low, film at 11 (3, Insightful)

Joining Yet Again (2992179) | about 5 months ago | (#45383563)

In America it's against the Constitution to write a new law which disadvantages a corporation. In Brazil, it is not. Will America liberate Brazil and free it from this tyranny?!

Re:Brazil aims low, film at 11 (0)

fragfoo (2018548) | about 5 months ago | (#45383571)

$500,000? To one of the biggest companies on Earth? They spend more than that on coffee. Go big or go home, Brazil. :)

According to TFA it is not a one-time fine, it is a daily fine (probably until they comply).

Re:Brazil aims low, film at 11 (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 months ago | (#45383669)

Maybe you should read the slashdot summary instead of TFA...

Re:Brazil aims low, film at 11 (1)

gnasher719 (869701) | about 5 months ago | (#45383629)

$500,000? To one of the biggest companies on Earth? They spend more than that on coffee. Go big or go home, Brazil. :)

This is a quite common idiotic attitude, that a fine should be somehow related to the size of the company. It should be related to the seriousness of whatever they are fined for. It's obvious that a big company will do 10 times more things that are wrong than each of ten companies that are 1/10th of the size. So total fines will be ten times higher, as they should, but each fine should be the same.

Re:Brazil aims low, film at 11 (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 months ago | (#45384309)

So, once you get big enough, you can do the same shit that would take a lesser company out of business and simply write the fines down to operating expenses?

Punishment for bad behavior should be felt as punishment and if it's on the same level as one's crack-and-whores budget, I don't think it drives the message home. I can afford all the speeding tickets they can throw at me, let's go for a ride!

Re:Brazil aims low, film at 11 (5, Insightful)

girlintraining (1395911) | about 5 months ago | (#45384549)

This is a quite common idiotic attitude, that a fine should be somehow related to the size of

This is a quite common misunderstanding of what the purpose of a fine is: To act as a deterrent. The EPA used to say $50,000 per infraction for dumping hazardous waste into the ocean. The disposal companies then filmed themselves doing it and turned themselves in because it was cheaper than litigation, so they just confessed, paid the fine, and pocketed the difference. This is still happening today... because the cost of properly disposing of that waste is higher than the cost of the fine.

Now, you strawman'd the size of the company. But the size of the fine should be at least the cost of the damage done plus a punitive amount to act as a sufficient deterrent. What I'm saying here is that $500,000 is worth less that the money Google will make off using said personal data, and is thus ineffectual. The punitive amount on top of the calculated amount of profits they could make off the data should be high enough to deter Google from doing it in Brazil again... and thus wasting taxpayer dollars prosecuting them.

Re:Brazil aims low, film at 11 (1)

Sky Cry (872584) | about 5 months ago | (#45386629)

Now, you strawman'd the size of the company. But the size of the fine should be at least the cost of the damage done plus a punitive amount to act as a sufficient deterrent. What I'm saying here is that $500,000 is worth less that the money Google will make off using said personal data, and is thus ineffectual. The punitive amount on top of the calculated amount of profits they could make off the data should be high enough to deter Google from doing it in Brazil again... and thus wasting taxpayer dollars prosecuting them.

But you yourself are mixing things up. First you're talking about "the damage done", then you're talking about "calculated amount of profits". So which one is it? And how could you possibly calculate it in this case?

Re:Brazil aims low, film at 11 (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 months ago | (#45383649)

To one of the biggest companies on Earth?

Brazil has a number of companies that are bigger than Google... Petrobras, Itau Unibanco Holding, Banco Bradesco, Banco do Brasil, ...

Re:Brazil aims low, film at 11 (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 months ago | (#45383677)

Google will have to change their company toilet rolls from $100 bills to $50 bills to cover this.

Re:Brazil aims low, film at 11 (1)

BluBrick (1924) | about 5 months ago | (#45386359)

Google will have to change their company toilet rolls from $100 bills to $50 bills to cover this.

On the bright side, they'll have twice as much toilet paper.

If google had never lied willingly (1)

Stan92057 (737634) | about 5 months ago | (#45383539)

If google had never lied willingly then they can get the benefit of the dought . But Google has long past the benefit of the dought lying and getting caught and fined many time. Google is flat out untrustable.

Re:If google had never lied willingly (1)

foobar bazbot (3352433) | about 5 months ago | (#45383963)

If google had never lied willingly then they can get the benefit of the dought . But Google has long past the benefit of the dought lying and getting caught and fined many time.

Are you suggesting Google is doughty [merriam-webster.com] , but unable to benefit from their "fearless resolution"?

What a Relief (4, Insightful)

skywire (469351) | about 5 months ago | (#45383561)

If I were a Brazilian, I'd be soooo relieved to know that now the data would be in the hands not only of Google, but the state.

Re:What a Relief (1)

houstonbofh (602064) | about 5 months ago | (#45384183)

If I were a Brazilian, I'd be soooo relieved to know that now the data would be in the hands not only of Google, but the state.

If you have a Brazilian, you have nothing to hide. I mean, if you ARE a Brazilian... Sorry about that.

Re:What a Relief (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 months ago | (#45385713)

If I were a Brazilian, I'd be soooo relieved to know that now the data would be in the hands not only of Google, but the state.

If you were a Brazilian, your data would already be in the hands of the state. If it was worth anything, that is, or might embarrass one of your rulers, or if you were a foreign diplomat.

Google get free! (1)

marcroelofs (797176) | about 5 months ago | (#45383569)

Google could have prevented this by moving out of the US and disconnect all ties with its government spooks.

"Handing it over"? (5, Insightful)

fche (36607) | about 5 months ago | (#45383673)

The data did not come from Brazilian government. If they are accusing Google of spying on private data, then that private data to the government would be tantamount to spying on Brazilians on the .br government's behalf.

If data is private to the people, delete it, don't give it to government.

Re:"Handing it over"? (1)

gl4ss (559668) | about 5 months ago | (#45383795)

well yeah, but that's legal.

basically they want to know the data because another government already has that data, so they can fine google some more, possibly for espionage.

since the data is certain to include something that can be counted as such..

Re:"Handing it over"? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 months ago | (#45383917)

fine google some more, possibly for espionage.

draw and quarter them pesky goooogle-bosses,

by all means, but do not let Zuckerbooger and FB off the hook!!!!!!!

Private? (1)

haydensdaddy (1719524) | about 5 months ago | (#45383737)

" to access private wi-fi networks" I seriously doubt it was hacking their networks. If you don't put a password on your wi-fi... it becomes a "public wi-fi network"...

Re:Private? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 months ago | (#45383887)

I leave it open so PEOPLE can use it, not so megacorperations and governments can spy on it and slow it down!
Brazil could learn a thing about both openness and privacy from a quick history lesson: 1. in us census data, there are huge gaps in the slaveowner/slaveholder data, perhaps intentionally convoluted, perhaps coincidental to legal "person"s (corpse?).
2. If goooogle is taking down it`s recorded data from their vehicles, president Obama might be visiting Rio next week, strangely he also visited around the time the blackboxes were removed from the AirFrance flight.

"a klucker and a blackpanther are locked in a court battle,
  the lawyers for both are both called Shamuel"
-Sinbad the great jewish Pirate

p.s.`d does anyone know if the credit-card-payphones on jumbo-jets use AMDOCS telephone-metadata (billing) softwar?

Re:Private? (2)

nurb432 (527695) | about 5 months ago | (#45384043)

Do you have a TOS agreement page? If not, then your argument of 'only for people' is null and void.

Re:Private? (2)

gnasher719 (869701) | about 5 months ago | (#45384263)

" to access private wi-fi networks" I seriously doubt it was hacking their networks. If you don't put a password on your wi-fi... it becomes a "public wi-fi network"...

It's like leaving the door to your home open. The contents doesn't become public property. Anyone taking it is still a thief. Anyone entering against your will is still trespassing. Sure, it's stupid and no big surprise if things are gone (depending on your neighbourhood) but it's not public.

Same with WiFi. Just because my neighbours use unencrypted WiFi, that doesn't mean I can listen to what goes on on their network. I'd probably be able to find software that allows me to do this, but my computer, out of the box, has no way for me to read for example unencrypted e-mails being sent through their unencrypted WiFi.

Re:Private? (1)

gnasher719 (869701) | about 5 months ago | (#45384283)

Adding to the previous post: Of course my computer can, without any problems, access the internet using your WiFi if it is unencrypted, and if you pay per GB and I download tons of videos it may hurt your pocket. But this is not what this is about. I can't, without specifically written software, find out what _you_ are doing on the network.

the law, and physics, disagree. Firing stuff out (1)

raymorris (2726007) | about 5 months ago | (#45384677)

I once set up a PA for people doing speeches. When the microphone was turned off, the transmissions from the business radio service nearby entered the microphone cable, which worked as a very long, and very bad antenna. I was trying to record the speeches , but was instead recording people's conversations. I had to work frantically to find a way to block their transmissions from getting into my recordings.

That's why since shortly after the invention of radio the law has been that if you want to transmit, it's your responsibility to ensure your transmissions don't unreasonably leak into other people's recordings. You are allowed to listen to anything people broadcast simply because physics are suchthat it's hard NOT to hear what people are beaming at you. Turn on your AM radio and try to tune to a silent frequency. You can't. Anywhere you set the dial, you'll hear people's transmissions. Sometimes you'll hear a dozen transmissions at once, which is called "static".

Going back to your open door analogy, the part you missed is that the homeowner is sending the conversations OUT of the house, throughout the neighborhood. It's like the door is open, yes, and they are standing in the doorway with a megaphone shouting to the neighborhood. Then complaining that someone heard them.

Re:Private? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 months ago | (#45384705)

no, it's like yelling and then complaining that your neighbors heard you arguing with your wife.It's a broadcast. Your wifi signal is pushed into my house.

Re:Private? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 months ago | (#45385247)

The butlers and chauffeurs usually open the doors for me, are they guilty because they are my proxy, or is one guilty for having a proxy?
IF THE DOOR IS OPEN BECAUSE THE GATEKEEPER ALLOWS IT, the intention of those who pass is the question;
two be, or PRISM was not started by the israelis ("BiBi")? THAT, my friends, is the question.

Something missing... (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 months ago | (#45383773)

What I'm missing here: what is Brazil going to do with the data?

If Google "hands it over", nothing stops them from keeping a copy and Brazil has no way to prevent or even check that. So the point can not be preventing Google from having the data.

So the point seems to be: Brazil wants the data for themselves and $500,000 is cheaper than setting up a spying operation themselves - an operation they could never sell as protecting privacy and computer rights of their citizens.

Or am I paranoid?

Re:Something missing... (1)

canadiannomad (1745008) | about 5 months ago | (#45385889)

Please, somebody, mod this up... It is the only logical explanation for wanting a *copy* and not for them to delete it.

who cares? (4, Insightful)

nurb432 (527695) | about 5 months ago | (#45383781)

Really.. if you are broadcasting personal info to the world unencrypted, who cares if its Google or your neighbor collecting it? Its your own damned fault.

Dont like it, either encrypt or prevent your signal from invading my space ( perhaps ill just sue you for that 2nd part.. )

Re:who cares? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 months ago | (#45384171)

Are you 12 years old by any chance? Clearly a Dumerican, though.

Re:who cares? (2)

girlintraining (1395911) | about 5 months ago | (#45386169)

Really.. if you are broadcasting personal info to the world unencrypted,

You do realize that broadcasting this information is how wifi works, right? This is like saying if you don't want companies to record your keystrokes, you shouldn't use a wireless keyboard, while conveniently ignoring the question why the hell are they doing it anyway?

eeeeeeeee (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 months ago | (#45383931)

500K?! ROFL! I bet everyone over at Google is getting kick out of this and laughing their ass off.

That's like someone taking one of my Vicodin out of my 240

What that software was doing there in first place? (1)

lapm (750202) | about 5 months ago | (#45384077)

So software is removed now, it would be interesting to know what it was doing in those car first place.. Google mus have known they would be world in trouble if extent of their snooping comes out.

Re:What that software was doing there in first pla (1)

VortexCortex (1117377) | about 5 months ago | (#45384363)

Everybody knows what it was doing in the first place. The cameras were taking pictures. The wifi software was sniffing for SSIDs / network IDs to link them with GPS coords to assist in their WIFI based location services, like several other companies do. The software they assembled to grab the over the air packets was from an open source project. They only needed the network IDs, but the software just grabbed whatever data was in the air. Google's the one that came out first and essentially said, "whoops, hey, we accidentally logged more data than we wanted to, we'll just keep the generated reports with the data we need and delete everything else, cool?" Then the governments at large realized that they could snoop through a bunch of their citizen's web traffic and email with GEO-location and network signatures attached, FOR FREE! So, they got all huffy and demanded google hand over the goods.

Google outted themselves to the "extent of their snooping" which equates to a lesser extent than stuff anyone with a wifi phone or laptop can see who's walking or driving by your house war-driving (it's similar to war-diling back in the day). This is VERY old news that's been covered thoroughly. Whatever, not like I give a damn about educating scared and literally ignorat folks like you. It doesn't ever change anyone's mind. FYI: Google's pretty damn open about the extent to which they gather information. It's not a secret, no one gives a damn -- what does Google have to loose?

Re:What that software was doing there in first pla (1)

VortexCortex (1117377) | about 5 months ago | (#45384373)

/oos/os/

Re:What that software was doing there in first pla (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 months ago | (#45386469)

I know it was a simple typo, but you have rather unwittingly highlighted one of the issues at the heart of this privacy/data collection issue.

For a brief moment, let's set aside the method and motive of the collection and deal with a company's handling of the data. If they already have my data, I'd actually be happy for the company to lose it. On the other hand, if they were to loose it, I might well be very upset.

Could this story please die (1)

kevin lyda (4803) | about 5 months ago | (#45384333)

We know Google sniffed the data it sniffed because they reported themselves for doing it.

If you think about this technically, there is absolutely zero useful info one could get from such data (other than using it as a source for randomness and even then...).

All these stories do is punish a company for self-reporting a perceived privacy concern - one which they quickly addressed.

Re:Could this story please die (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 months ago | (#45384673)

Bullshit, MAC addresses are valuable and can be used to track documents that embed them. There are allegations of Microsoft Office documents that embed MAC addresses. Who knows what other American companies are doing this too. Google has been busted collecting this type of information.

Re:Could this story please die (1)

kevin lyda (4803) | about 5 months ago | (#45384857)

MAC addresses are useless for tracking pretty much anything except on a LAN (and even then they're pretty useless - particularly with virtual machines becoming more prevalent). In addition MAC address info ages out insanely quickly. Half the MAC addresses in my house post-date the street view car passing. And in fact several others aren't here.

ESSID info is useful for geolocation, but even it rapidly ages. And Google is hardly the only company that sniffs that.

And Microsoft applications bleed private info far more sensitive than MAC addresses. I once got a job offer as a Word document which also contained job offers for four other people. Some versions of Word and Excel save random bits of RAM into docs. Honestly if you're using Microsoft products and expect to have any privacy you're an idiot.

Re:Could this story please die (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 months ago | (#45385025)

You are right. "It saddens one that most people (including te boffins) did not realize that most israeli-linked companies are dealing in what is sometimes termed "dual-use" technology; dual use implies that it may be being used for something other than the published applcications, for example, Samsung announced a patent for a tatooable mic, then, a few days later, Apple-Mackintosh announced a patent for a tatooable mic with a built-in lie detector. Well, when one plugs a mic in a jack on a machine running skype, it is intended to enable a two-way VOIP telephone call, not to listen in on my neighbors who happen to be illegal immigrants legitimately squatting in the vacant, disconnected flat next-door. Anyone who is fiddling with my machine settings, (mic sensitivity for example), is doing so in a criminal fashion. Likewise, I purchased a new high-tech flatscreen-telly, for my viewing pleasure.... the remote-control is to be used ONLY BY ME (upon pain of death), for me to switch things ON MY TELLY!!! It is not right nor proper for infra-red imaging to be gotten from it, winding up in some implausibly-denied datahub/datawormhole in nuclear-powered Tel-Aviv. These criminals MUST be stopped, AMDOCS, AKAMAI, GOOOGLE, ONAVO, the owners of PRISM, and whomever else they conspire with. "Congress?", one may ask, well, buddy `ol Pal, the buck don`t stop here, what, with the four-million-tonne lead dome being searched (by israeli-linked "contractors") for israeli bugs?!?

Scriptum Postum..... or is it???? it appears so..."
-KrackerJack

"It`s a mystery why the Prince covers every lightsource in his hotel suite with tape"
        -BBC Paedant

Re:Could this story please die (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 months ago | (#45384855)

We know that Google sniffed the data, because the German caught them lying about what data they collected.
Before the German asked them to hand over the data, they were falsely stating that they did not store any.

http://googleblog.blogspot.com/2010/05/wifi-data-collection-update.html [blogspot.com]

Also, they impeded US investigation over that matter.

http://www.pcpro.co.uk/news/374095/google-fined-for-impeding-wi-fi-data-investigation [pcpro.co.uk]

Finally, they lied again about having already deleted the data.

http://www.telegraph.co.uk/technology/google/9432518/Google-we-failed-to-delete-all-Streetview-data.html [telegraph.co.uk]

Re:Could this story please die (1)

PolygamousRanchKid (1290638) | about 5 months ago | (#45384967)

If you think about this technically, there is absolutely zero useful info one could get from such data (other than using it as a source for randomness and even then...).

That depends on who the one is. Given a Kismet trace of a neighborhood, I can tell you which router models people are using to check for vulnerabilities for that model. Or I could use Wash, which is packaged with Reaver, to see which routers have WPS enabled and are vulnerable to the Reaver cracker. The NSA boys probably have neater toys.

It was actually a brilliant plan. Google drives around the world claiming to take cute pictures of neighborhoods. "Someone else" in the car collects and hacks away.

And it all would have worked, if it wasn't for those damn kids . . .

Now every country in the world is wondering what else Google was doing in those cars, and who else was riding in them. I guess we'll have to wait for yet another Snowden leak. But Snowden will probably wait until Google and the government deny it first. Then release it, catching them lying like rugs again.

Re:Could this story please die (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 months ago | (#45385177)

P*R*K*, You are truly great!
How did you guess it was "riding in cars with boys"-in-blue (and the men in black)?
What are your delusions about Israeli involvement (SiSense) in the PRISM?

MAC Addresses! (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 months ago | (#45384597)

All of those MAC addresses Google scoops up could be useful for the NSA database. Coupled with Microsoft's alleged MAC address document embedding (in MS Office), tracking someone down with their MAC address becomes easier. This is a tool Google will likely keep operational and secret.

The real lesson here (2)

Solandri (704621) | about 5 months ago | (#45385097)

Don't collect the data on your own. Have your users collect it for you [f-secure.com] , then secretly take it from their phones. That way if the government has a problem with it, you can just say, "We didn't collect any data, all these people did. They just agreed to share it with us by clicking on an OK button."

Main Q sould be what does brazill want (1)

mjwalshe (1680392) | about 5 months ago | (#45385381)

to do with the data?

Re:Main Q sould be what does brazill want (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 months ago | (#45385881)

"The same thing we do every night, Pinky—try to take over the world!"

Why hasn't it been deleted already? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 months ago | (#45385545)

Well? That's a pretty good question, isn't it?

GEO IP data from wifi device data? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 months ago | (#45385743)

I thought google builds a map of wifi devices (MAC address). They then use that data to provide and sell GEO IP location services. That is how they can locate you by knowing the devices that are around your location.

Some countries might consider that data collection and use a violation of privacy, forcing google to pay.

On the money. (1)

lvxferre (2470098) | about 5 months ago | (#45386027)

Guys. The maximum fine isn't US$ 500 000. It is US$ 500 000 per day. So, for the first day they pay 50k, 100k for the second, 150k for the third... and there it goes.

This fine amounts to roughly 180M annually. If low or high, it's up for debate.

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