Angry British villagers stop Google maps car: report

Apr 03, 2009
A Google Street View car with its camera in Amsterdam in March 2009. Angry residents of an English village blocked the driver of a Street View car who was filming the neighbourhood, saying they feared he would encourage burglaries, a report said.

Angry residents of an English village blocked the driver of a Google Street View car who was filming the neighbourhood, saying they feared he would encourage burglaries, a report said Friday.

One resident, Paul Jacobs, told the BBC he had alerted his neighbours after spotting the car from his window in Broughton, Buckinghamshire, southern England, on Wednesday.

"I don't have a problem with wanting to promote villages. What I have a problem with is the invasion of , taking pictures directly into the home," Jacobs said.

"We've already had three burglaries locally in the past six weeks. If our houses are plastered all over Google it's an invitation for more criminals to strike. I was determined to make a stand, so I called the police."

After his call, a police car arrived in Broughton to reports of a dispute between a crowd of people and a Google contractor.

"They felt his presence was an intrusion of their privacy. When police arrived at the scene, the car had moved on," explained a spokeswoman for Thames Valley Police.

The Google Street View project, set up last month in Britain, aims to provide detailed 360-degree views online of streets all over Britain.

The project has already been strongly criticised by associations like Privacy International, a pressure group which has launched legal action against the IT company.

Google is confident their new mapping project is within the law.

"Before launching Street View we sought the guidance and approval of the Information Commissioner's Office. The ICO has repeatedly made clear that it believes that Street View includes the safeguards necessary to protect people's privacy," a Google spokesman said.

"The Metropolitan Police (in London) told us they saw no appreciable security risk, that burglars are opportunistic, and that mapping products can be useful in solving and mapping crime in an area."

He added: "Embarking on new projects, we sometimes encounter unexpected challenges, and Street View has been no exception."

(c) 2009 AFP

Explore further: Study reveals mature motorists worse at texting and driving

add to favorites email to friend print save as pdf

Related Stories

Google removes street images over privacy complaints

Mar 20, 2009

US software giant Google said Friday it had removed several images from its Street View software, which allows web surfers to view parts of 25 British cities, after users raised privacy concerns.

Google Maps combines with Google Local

Oct 07, 2005

Google Inc. of Mountain View, Calif., says it has combined its Google Maps service with Google Local, moving both out of beta, or testing, status.

Privacy group urges probe of Google cloud services

Mar 18, 2009

A US electronic privacy group has called for the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) to investigate the security and privacy of Google's Web-based products such as email and photo services.

Google goes to Mars

Mar 14, 2006

Not only can the ubiquitous search engine Google supply information, images and other Earth-bound data quickly, it can now also provide views of Mars.

Hybrid Human Faces Could Populate Google Street View

Jul 30, 2008

Due to privacy concerns, Google has been blurring the faces of people caught on Google Street View cameras. But rather than blurring people's faces and diminishing the reality of the scene, researchers have ...

Recommended for you

Study reveals mature motorists worse at texting and driving

8 hours ago

A Wayne State University interdisciplinary research team in the Eugene Applebaum College of Pharmacy and Health Sciences has made a surprising discovery: older, more mature motorists—who typically are better drivers in ...

Napster co-founder to invest in allergy research

Dec 17, 2014

(AP)—Napster co-founder Sean Parker missed most of his final year in high school and has ended up in the emergency room countless times because of his deadly allergy to nuts, shellfish and other foods.

LA mayor plans 7,000 police body cameras in 2015

Dec 16, 2014

Mayor Eric Garcetti announced a plan Tuesday to equip 7,000 Los Angeles police officers with on-body cameras by next summer, making LA's police department the nation's largest law enforcement agency to move ...

Merriam-Webster names 'culture' word of the year

Dec 15, 2014

A nation, a workplace, an ethnicity, a passion, an outsized personality. The people who comprise these things, who fawn or rail against them, are behind Merriam-Webster's 2014 word of the year: culture.

In Curiosity Hacked, children learn to make, not buy

Dec 14, 2014

With her right hand, my 8-year-old daughter, Kalian, presses the red-hot soldering iron against the circuit board. With her left hand, she guides a thin, tin wire until it's pressing against both the circuit board and the ...

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.