13 Mar 2013

Search engine settles street view investigation

1:14 pm on 13 March 2013

Google will pay $US7 million to settle an investigation into a controversial incident in which its street view mapping cars collected passwords and other personal data from home wireless networks between 2008 and 2010.

The deal ends a nearly three-year investigation.

The world's largest Internet search engine says the incident was a mistake owing to a piece of experimental computer code included in the cars' software and the data was not used in any Google services.

As part of the deal, Google agreed to eventually destroy the data collected in the United States.

It's currently working with various European countries to determine how to handle the data it collected there.

Google did not acknowledge violating any US laws in the so-called assurance of voluntary compliance that it entered into.

The fine, which will be split among the 38 states and District of Colombia involved in the investigation, represents a tiny fraction of Google's $50 billion of revenue in 2012.