Switzerland’s federal data protection commissioner, Hanspeter Thuer, has announced plans to bring a lawsuit against Google and force the company to make changes to its Street View functionality.
Citing specific concerns over the exposure of persons and cars being shown on Street View, particularly outside sensitive locations such as hospitals, prisons or schools, Thuer also wants to ban images taken within enclosed areas such as walled gardens and private streets.
According to the commissioner, Google refused to implement the majority of recommended privacy measures to protect Switzerland’s strict tradition of personal privacy, and as a result, he is bringing the case to the Federal Administrative Court.
Until this case is settled, Thuer has asked the court to require Google to remove all photographs taken in Switzerland and to cease taking any more photos in the country.
This isn’t the first uproar over Street View’s the invasion of privacy. Google has been heavily criticized in Europe, Japan, and here in the US for exposing individuals without first obtaining consent.
In response to the lawsuit, Google said it believes Street View is legal and is disappointed by the prosecution, which it will “vigorously contest”.
If YOU find Street view invasive, read my blog How to Remove Images of Your Home from Google’s Street View