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    Swiss Court Orders Google to Comply with Privacy Rules

    Apr 19, 2011
    In April, a Swiss court ordered Google to comply with privacy rules and make all images of individuals and vehicle plates unrecognizable on its Street View picture map. According to a Montrealgazette.com article, Street View allows users to take a ground-level panoramic view of some locations on Google Maps, based on still photographs taken by specially equipped vehicles.
    In April, a Swiss court ordered Google to comply with privacy rules and make all images of individuals and vehicle plates unrecognizable on its Street View picture map. According to a Montrealgazette.com article, Street View allows users to take a ground-level panoramic view of some locations on Google Maps, based on still photographs taken by specially equipped vehicles.

    The article noted that Switzerland Data Protection Commissioner Hanspeter Thuer had complained on several occasions that the service, introduced for Switzerland in 2009, broke privacy rules. In November 2009, Thuer took Google to court after the Internet firm refused to apply the majority of measures recommended by Thuer on how images should be treated.

    The court ruled in favor of Thuer, saying, “The defendants must make all faces and number plates unrecognizable before the pictures can be published on the Internet."

    According to the article, the court "concludes that the interest of the public in having a visual record and the commercial interests of the defendants in no way outweigh the rights over one's own image, as the pictures can be made more or totally unrecognizable, and this is a proportionate measure."

    Google noted that an appeal may be filed against the Federal Administrative Court's decision.

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