Police raided Googles South Korean offices to confiscate Google Street View data to determine if Google has broken the law with the data and types of data it has collected through its street view vehicles

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Earlier this year it became known that the vehicles collecting data for Google Street View were also capturing information from wireless Internet routers such as owned by companies and individuals.

The capturing of that data was accidental, says Google, and caused by left-over experimental code in the data collection routines.

The UK concluded that the data does not include meaningful personal details that could be linked to an identifiable person. The case remains up for grabs in the USA where the state attorney general is asking questions and the FCC is examining the case.

Other countries where Googles collection of private information is under investigation include Spain, France and Italy.

See also: Google Wi-Fi Data Snooping: An FAQ

What It Means To You

The street view debacle is something that touches hardly any business interests and certainly doesnt influence any of your SEO goals or strategies.

It does demonstrate a reputation issue and as such is an outstanding example case of proper reputation management. Google owned up to its (illegal) data collection as soon as it could (vs. a knee-jerk denial) and throughout has ensured it at least comes across as open and cooperative as possible, offering to share code and giving access to its collected data.