The bigger you get, the more you get noticed and the more responsible you need to be.
Google has been slapped again, this time by the Australian Privacy Commissioner who declared the collection of street view data for google maps to have been done with insufficient consideration of the privacy pinciples involved. Mainly because the process, using unsecured WiFi equipment, inadvertantly collected unsecured personal information as well.
Google has now provided undertakings and published an apology on its Australian blog – read it here.
One of the undertakings involes Google preparing a Privacy Impact Assessment (PIA) on any new street view data collection project that it proposes to undertake. A PIA is an assessment of a project from a privacy perspective to identify and assist in the management of activities that may impact individuals privacy. The PIA will be lodged with the Privacy Commissioner.
The Australian Privacy Commissioner has also recently launched a consultation paper, proposing more streamlined and stringent privacy principles for the future. This process is likely to result in new legislation coming into effect by mid 2012 and require all businesses using privacy policies to update them by the time that legislation comes into effect.
If you are doing business in Australia and handle personal information – put it in your diary now! Don't leave it to the last minute.