NEWS2 February 2015

Google to update UK privacy policy following investigation

News Privacy Technology UK

UK — Google has been forced to update its privacy policy in the UK following a three year investigation by the Information Commissioner’s Office (ICO).


The data privacy watchdog found that Google was “too vague” in describing how it used people’s personal data and has ordered it to make substantial changes, according to a story on the BBC.

Google has now agreed to ensure that its privacy policy is more accessible and to redesign its account settings feature to allow users to find its controls more easily. It will also provide “unambiguous and comprehensive information regarding data processing, including an exhaustive list of the types of data processed by Google and the purposes for which data is processed”.

The company will now include information on who can collect cookie-like “anonymous identifiers” and the reasons for their collection, as well as ensuring that passive users – those who use Google but are not signed in – are better informed about the processing of their data.

“This undertaking marks a significant step forward following a long investigation and extensive dialogue,” said Steve Eckersley, head of enforcement at the ICO, in a statement on the watchdog’s website. “Google’s commitment today to make these necessary changes will improve the information UK consumers receive when using their online services and products.”

The company has until June 30 2015 to implement the changes.