Google Street View gets bumper German blackout

Google has announced that it is blurring out a not inconsiderable portion of Germany in its Street View service, following complaints from over 244,000 households.

The requests to remove their property represent around three percent of households across Germany's 20 largest cities, and a clear message from the population that technology shouldn't trump privacy.

Peter Schaar, who heads up Germany's data protection watchdog, claimed: "The high number of objections to Google Street View shows that citizens want to decide which data about themselves is published on the Internet."

The massive list of requests for removal may also demonstrate lingering anger over Google's attempts to dodge responsibility for using Street View cars to snoop on Wi-Fi traffic, albeit accidentally, with the company having missed a deadline to hand over the captured data back in May.

While the high number of requests for removal may be concerning to Google's Street View team, at least it's been allowed to launch there. In the Czech Republic the Street View cars are completely banned, while other nations have been investigating the service's privacy implications following demonstrations of how to use Street View to track an Internet user to within a few metres by Samy Kamkar.

There's no doubt that Street View is a technologically impressive service, but as Google is finding out that's not necessarily going to reassure people about their privacy.