New Zealand investigates whether Google map fiasco is illegal

Police over in New Zealand are trying to make up their minds as to whether Google was acting criminally when it grabbed information it wasn’t supposed to during Street View mapping expeditions.

The news comes after it admitted mapping every UK wireless router,  missed its deadline in Germany,  and was put under investigation in Australia for generally coming across as being both sneaky and dastardly

Katrine Evans, who is the Assistant Privacy Commissioner in New Zealand, met up with the NZ rozzers this Wednesday afternoon. The Wall Street Journal reports her as saying: “We have agreed that we will now refer this matter formally to them, so that they can consider whether Google has committed a criminal offence by collecting payload data from Wi-Fi networks during its Street View filming.”

Whether the coppers reckon Google need to be sent down is not clear yet – but we reckon it’ll be in a spot of bother. Katrine said that the commission will continue to look into privacy breaches by Google but will not comment any further on the matter. 

“It is good practice to tell people in advance what information is being collected and what the information will be used for,” said Evans. 

Especially when it’s without consent.