Is Google Making Up Fake Laws In Order To Cover For Its Retention Policies?
from the we-have-to dept
Over the years, Google has taken a lot of flack from privacy advocates concerned about its data retention policies. The company has tried to mollify its critics by shortening the duration of time that it holds customer data, and claiming that it’s compelled to hold onto search data to comply with legal regulations, in particular EU data retention laws. But as Ryan Singel points out, the legal angle is almost certainly bogus. While the EU does require companies to hold onto certain types of data, there’s nothing that requires the collection of search data, as it’s collected now. Basically, Google is using the law as a guise to cover the fact that it likes having lots of data on its users, as any company would. If it didn’t have such a data jones, it wouldn’t, as Singel points out, collect such extensive data for its personalized services without informing users. Because of its high profile, Google makes for a popular target among privacy advocates, and it could be argued that in many cases, the company gets an unfair shake. Still, it does itself no favors by making specious arguments to defend its position.