Google Sued By British Street Mapping Service - InformationWeek

InformationWeek is part of the Informa Tech Division of Informa PLC

This site is operated by a business or businesses owned by Informa PLC and all copyright resides with them.Informa PLC's registered office is 5 Howick Place, London SW1P 1WG. Registered in England and Wales. Number 8860726.

IoT
IoT
Government // Enterprise Architecture
News
4/11/2013
12:39 PM
50%
50%

Google Sued By British Street Mapping Service

Steetmap suit claiming Google uses "uncompetitive" practices follows announcement by six data protection authorities that they will sanction search giant for privacy noncompliance.

Google Nexus 7, Take Two: What To Expect
Google Nexus 7, Take Two: What To Expect
(click image for slideshow)
British online mapping company Streetmap has launched a court battle against Google, alleging that Google promotes its own maps over those of competitors like itself.

Google's actions have made Streetmap's products "harder to find," the Milton Keynes-based company says -- and that its charges reflect on-going European Union antitrust probes into whether Google favors its own services over competitors in search results.

"We have had to take this action in an effort to protect our business and attract attention to those that, like us, have started their own technology businesses, only to find them damaged by Google's cynical manipulation of search results," Kate Sutton, commercial director of Streetmap, told the Bloomberg news service Thursday. Details of the firm’s complaint were lodged in mid-March in a London court but are only now being made public.

[ Google is no stranger to privacy kerfuffles stateside. Read Google Preps $7 Million "Wi-Spy" Case Settlement. ]

Streetmap says it is a privately owned company with the owners managing and developing the business and that all its technology is self-created and managed, "from massive multi parallel software that powers the web engine to the high performance secure data centers that are used to deliver the mapping services."

The news comes during a rough period for Google in Europe. Last week, six European data protection agencies, in France, Germany, Italy, the Netherlands, Spain, and the U.K., said they were contemplating legal action over Google's approach to privacy. The agencies say legal action is necessary because Google has refused to comply with a four-month deadline they set for it to change its internal data protection structures.

According to France's data watchdog agency, CNIL, which spearheaded the probe, Google did not change course despite a warning in a mid-March meeting with representatives of all six bodies. The U.K.'s Information Commissioner confirmed it was looking at Google's policy but said it could not add further comment because the investigation was ongoing.

The European privacy scrutiny began when a Brussels working party found Google's privacy policy did not meet Commission standards on data protection and that the American company ought to do more to let users check what information was held about them. In a statement sent to the official French news agency AFP, Google defended its privacy policy as respecting European law and allowing it to "create simpler, more effective services."

InformationWeek's 2013 Government IT Innovators program will feature the most innovative government IT organizations in the 2013 InformationWeek 500 issue and on InformationWeek.com. Does your organization have what it takes? The nomination period for 2013 Government IT Innovators closes April 12.

We welcome your comments on this topic on our social media channels, or [contact us directly] with questions about the site.
Comment  | 
Print  | 
More Insights
Comments
Newest First  |  Oldest First  |  Threaded View
Terabyte Net
50%
50%
Terabyte Net,
User Rank: Apprentice
4/12/2013 | 12:39:13 PM
re: Google Sued By British Street Mapping Service
I've never quite understood this. Does Toyota promote GM? Does HP promote Dell? Does Coke promote Pepsi? No! So why should Google have to promote competitors' products?
News
Top 10 Data and Analytics Trends for 2021
Jessica Davis, Senior Editor, Enterprise Apps,  11/13/2020
Commentary
Where Cloud Spending Might Grow in 2021 and Post-Pandemic
Joao-Pierre S. Ruth, Senior Writer,  11/19/2020
Slideshows
The Ever-Expanding List of C-Level Technology Positions
Cynthia Harvey, Freelance Journalist, InformationWeek,  11/10/2020
White Papers
Register for InformationWeek Newsletters
Video
Current Issue
Why Chatbots Are So Popular Right Now
In this IT Trend Report, you will learn more about why chatbots are gaining traction within businesses, particularly while a pandemic is impacting the world.
Slideshows
Flash Poll