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Google Privacy Comes Under Fire From European Watchdogs

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Sam Schechner
The Wall street Journal
June 20, 2013

Google Inc. GOOG -0.91% is facing heightened pressure from European regulators, who are getting closer to bringing legal action or fines against the company for alleged violations of data-privacy rules, after more than a year of working together on probes.

France’s privacy watchdog, the Commission Nationale de l’Informatique et des Libertés, said Thursday that it has ordered Google to comply with a series of specific privacy requirements within three months or face fines. Regulators in five other countries—Germany, Italy, Spain, the Netherlands and the U.K.—said their parallel investigations are continuing on paths that could eventually lead to similar orders or fines.

The six watchdogs each have appointed a point-person to stay in touch with counterparts and coordinate announcements, according to a person familiar with the matter.

The 15-page order from France’s CNIL finds that Google’s handling of users’ personal data violates French law, and orders a series of six remedies, such as explicitly defining how long it keeps each type of user data, and stopping the combination of users’ personal data from different Google services “without legal basis.”

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This article was posted: Thursday, June 20, 2013 at 11:57 am

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