Bangalore police stop Google Street View

Google said on Tuesday it has been asked to take its Street View cars off the streets of Bangalore by the city police.

The company is facing regulatory challenges across the world as the service that offers 360-degree street-level imagery in Google Maps has raised privacy concerns.

From the last week of May, the internet search giant has been running its three-wheel pedicab — Google Trike —with a camera system mounted on top to collect images on the streets of Bangalore, the first location in India the company chose for the service.

“We can confirm that we received a letter from the commissioner of police regarding Street View. We are currently reviewing it and have stopped our cars until we have a chance to answer any questions or concerns the police have,” a Google spokesperson said. Google had said that to collect images in private destinations, it would work with property owners for permission.

In March 2011, CNIL, the French data protection regulator, slapped a fine of 100,000 euros on the company for gathering Wi-Fi network data through Street View to enable Wi-Fi triangulation in other Google products. In September 2010, the Czech Republic refused to grant permission for the service, stating that the feature invades people’s privacy.

Street View, launched in the US in 2007, now covers major urban centres.

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