S. Korea police raid Google over data collection

May 03, 2011
South Korean police Tuesday raided Google's local office to investigate whether the global search company used its mobile phone advertising platform to illegally collect private data.

South Korean police Tuesday raided Google's local office to investigate whether the global search company used its mobile phone advertising platform to illegally collect private location data.

Investigators were sent to Google's Seoul office to secure evidence related to its "AdMob" platform, the head of the police cyber crime unit, Chang Byung-Duk, told AFP.

The raid followed allegations that Google's mobile advertising agency, AdMob, had illegally collected data on individuals' locations via smartphone applications, he said.

Investigators also raided the head office of local portal site Daum on suspicions that its advertising platform was used to collect location data, he said.

"During today's raid, we failed to secure evidence because a related server is located in the United States. Instead, Google officials promised to cooperate and provide information later," Chang said.

The raid came a week after South Korea's telecoms regulator launched an inquiry into Apple to see whether the US giant's collection of location data from its and users violates privacy rules.

Apple dismissed claims it was tracking iPhone users. But it said it would fix software "bugs" that resulted in being unencrypted and stored for up to a year.

US lawmakers invited Apple and Google to attend a hearing on privacy this month following claims that the iPhone and Google's Android system were regularly tracking a user's location and storing the data.

Since it launched a Korean-language search site in 2000, Google has been striving to boost its presence against competition from local firms in one of the world's most wired societies.

But it has been hit by a previous probe in South Korea over data.

In January police accused Google of collecting personal data while producing its , which allows users to see panoramic street scenes on the site.

admitted its Street View cars, which have been cruising and taking photographs of cities in over 30 countries, inadvertently gathered fragments of personal data from unsecured WiFi systems.

But it said it did nothing illegal in South Korea and state prosecutors have yet to press charges.

Last month South Korean Internet firms filed complaints with the antitrust watchdog over Google's alleged practice of stifling competition in the local mobile phone search market.

Explore further: Digital dilemma: How will US respond to Sony hack?

add to favorites email to friend print save as pdf

Related Stories

S. Korea probes Apple about tracking feature

Apr 25, 2011

South Korea's telecoms regulator said Monday it had launched an inquiry into Apple to see whether the US giant's collection of location data from its iPhone and iPad users violates privacy rules.

SKorean police say Google collects personal info

Jan 06, 2011

(AP) -- Google Inc. collected e-mails and other personal information from unsecured wireless networks in South Korea while taking photographs for its Street View mapping service, police said Thursday.

Google accused of unfair trade in S. Korea

Apr 15, 2011

South Korea's top two Internet companies filed complaints with the antitrust watchdog Friday over Google's alleged practice of stifling competition in the local mobile phone search market.

SKorean police say Google violated laws

Jan 13, 2011

(AP) -- Police said Thursday that Google Inc. violated South Korean laws and referred the case to state prosecutors, adding to a slew of privacy cases the world's largest search engine is facing.

Recommended for you

Digital dilemma: How will US respond to Sony hack?

Dec 18, 2014

The detective work blaming North Korea for the Sony hacker break-in appears so far to be largely circumstantial, The Associated Press has learned. The dramatic conclusion of a Korean role is based on subtle ...

UN General Assembly OKs digital privacy resolution

Dec 18, 2014

The U.N. General Assembly has approved a resolution demanding better digital privacy protections for people around the world, another response to Edward Snowden's revelations about U.S. government spying.

Online privacy to remain thorny issue: survey

Dec 18, 2014

Online privacy will remain a thorny issue over the next decade, without a widely accepted system that balances user rights and personal data collection, a survey of experts showed Thursday.

Spain: Google News vanishes amid 'Google Tax' spat

Dec 16, 2014

Google on Tuesday followed through with a pledge to shut down Google News in Spain in reaction to a Spanish law requiring news publishers to receive payment for content even if they are willing to give it away.

User comments : 0

Please sign in to add a comment. Registration is free, and takes less than a minute. Read more

Click here to reset your password.
Sign in to get notified via email when new comments are made.