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Google still has personal data that was supposed to be deleted


A man checks out the homepage of Google internet search engine in an office in Washington, DC, on Feb. 8, 2011, when Google paid tribute to Jules Verne, author of "Twenty Thousand Leagues Under the Sea." Israel is debating letting in Google Street View.


Jewel Samad

Eighteen months ago, Google announced that it had deleted 600 gigabytes of personal data that its Street View cars accidentally collected in 2010. But Google now admits that it never actually did delete that data, BBC News reported.

Back in 2010, Google had apologized for collecting the data and said it was a "mistake." That mistake lead Google to come under fire from watchdog agencies across the globe. In December 2010, Google issued a statement in the United Kingdom saying it had destroyed records of the personal data, the BBC said. But that turned out to not be true. 

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Google informed Britain's Information Commissioner's Office (ICO), a.ka. the UK agency investigating Google, of its broken promise today. The ICO is not happy. "The ICO is clear that this information should never have been collected in the first place and the company's failure to secure its deletion as promised is a cause for concern," the ICO told Reuters

That data will now be handed over to the ICO, ZDNET reported. Google's announcement comes a month after the ICO re-opened its investigation into the data collection. An initial investigation by the UK government came under fire from critics, after Google came away with a mere slap on the wrist. It was later revealed that a former ICO official left his job to work at Google.