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ICO denies conflict of interest over Google Street View investigation

John E Dunn | July 9, 2012
Google's UK privacy head Stephen McCartney was responsible for data protection promotion at the Information Commissioner's Office (ICO) during the period the search giant was cleared of wrongdoing over its Street View mapping system, it has been revealed.

Earlier this week, the ICO was criticised by security company Barracuda Networks for reporting on the issue of unwanted marketing via phone calls and email without mentioning abuse of social media. The defence could be that the ICO's figures reflect what members of the public actually complain about.

More contentiously, there have been longstanding grumbles about the effectiveness of the ICO's regime of fines for organisations found to have breached the Data Protection Act. The ICO projects itself as levying tough fines while critics feel the organisation's 'get tough' stance still lacks teeth.


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