Google’s New Privacy Policies Break EU Laws

02 March 2012 Internet, IT & e-Discovery Blog Blog
Authors: Peter Vogel

 Although Google claims its new Privacy Policy helps simplify privacy, the EU claims otherwise and specifically that the new Privacy Policy “makes it impossible to understand which purposes, personal data, recipients or access rights are relevant to the use of a specific service.”  

The EU gave the lead to investigate Google’s new Privacy Policy to the French Commission nationale de l’informatique et des libertés (CNIL). CNIL states that it “is responsible for ensuring that information technology remains at the service of citizens, and does not jeopardize human identity or breach human rights, privacy or individual or public liberties.”  

On February 27, 2012 CNIL sent a letter to Google CEO Larry Page (which was follow-up to a February 3rd letter) complaining that Google failed to properly consult EU authorities about the new Google Privacy Policies and that the:

...preliminary analysis shows that Google’s new policy does not meet the requirements of the European Directive of Data Protection (95/46/CE), especially regarding information provided to data subject.  

The CNIL highlighted the significance of Google’s penetration in the EU with the following statistics about Google’s usage: 

-more than 80% of the European search engine market,
-around 30% of the European smartphones market,
-40% of the global online video market and
-more than 40% of the global online advertisement market

Apparently Google has chosen to ignore the EU’s warnings and surely we will see more headlines soon.

This blog is made available by Foley & Lardner LLP (“Foley” or “the Firm”) for informational purposes only. It is not meant to convey the Firm’s legal position on behalf of any client, nor is it intended to convey specific legal advice. Any opinions expressed in this article do not necessarily reflect the views of Foley & Lardner LLP, its partners, or its clients. Accordingly, do not act upon this information without seeking counsel from a licensed attorney. This blog is not intended to create, and receipt of it does not constitute, an attorney-client relationship. Communicating with Foley through this website by email, blog post, or otherwise, does not create an attorney-client relationship for any legal matter. Therefore, any communication or material you transmit to Foley through this blog, whether by email, blog post or any other manner, will not be treated as confidential or proprietary. The information on this blog is published “AS IS” and is not guaranteed to be complete, accurate, and or up-to-date. Foley makes no representations or warranties of any kind, express or implied, as to the operation or content of the site. Foley expressly disclaims all other guarantees, warranties, conditions and representations of any kind, either express or implied, whether arising under any statute, law, commercial use or otherwise, including implied warranties of merchantability, fitness for a particular purpose, title and non-infringement. In no event shall Foley or any of its partners, officers, employees, agents or affiliates be liable, directly or indirectly, under any theory of law (contract, tort, negligence or otherwise), to you or anyone else, for any claims, losses or damages, direct, indirect special, incidental, punitive or consequential, resulting from or occasioned by the creation, use of or reliance on this site (including information and other content) or any third party websites or the information, resources or material accessed through any such websites. In some jurisdictions, the contents of this blog may be considered Attorney Advertising. If applicable, please note that prior results do not guarantee a similar outcome. Photographs are for dramatization purposes only and may include models. Likenesses do not necessarily imply current client, partnership or employee status.


Related Services