MPs slam Google in landmark parliamentary debate in internet privacy29/10/2010 10:57
In a landmark parliamentary debate on internet privacy this afternoon, Members of Parliament launched a stinging attack on Google for its harvesting of sensitive personal information by its Street View vehicles.
Today’s debate was one of crucial importance.
Given the number of contributions this afternoon from Members of Parliament across the political divide, Google must now sit up and take notice of the numerous concerns amongst parliamentarians in relation to the company’s reckless approach to personal privacy.
Ed Vaizey MP, the minister at the Department for Culture, Media and Sport with responsibility for internet issues, indicated that he would be speaking to Google as a matter of urgency to convey the concerns of Members. A verbal ticking-off from Minister is, however, nothing more than a slap on the wrist – and this simply doesn’t go far enough when it comes to disciplining the company for one of the most significant invasions of personal privacy in British history.
It is a great shame that the Metropolitan Police have let Google off the hook when it comes to launching a criminal investigation into the company’s conduct. The puts the ball very much back into the Information Commissioner’s court. Thus far the Commissioner has been an apologist for the worst offenders in his sphere of responsibility, not a policeman of them. Following on from today’s debate, let’s hope that he now shows some teeth and punishes Google for their wrongdoing
Big Brother Watch would like to extend it sincere thanks to the debate’s initiator Robert Halfon MP.
The full list of MPs who attended is as follows: Ed Vaizey MP (Minister for the Internet), Mike Weir MP (in the Chair), Michael Ellis MP, Mike Weatherley MP, Damian Collins MP, Julian Huppert MP, Rt Hon David Davis MP, Ian Lucas MP, Robert Goodwill MP, Robin Walker MP, Mark Lancaster MP, Chris D. Kelly MP, Damian Hinds MP, Don Foster MP, Bob Stewart MP, Nigel Dodds MP, Sir Alan Beith MP, Nadine Dorries MP, Eric Joyce MP, Jane Ellison MP, Steve Baker MP and Dominic Raab MP.