ICO orders Google to change privacy policy

Google must amend its privacy policy or face formal sanctions from the Information Commissioner’s Office (ICO) under the terms of the Data Protection Act, according to the regulator.

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The ICO has written to Google ordering it to better articulate its privacy policies to make consumers more aware of how their information will be used by the online giant as its privacy policy “raises serious questions” about its compliance with the UK Data Protection Act.

Google must now amend its privacy policy by 20 September or face “formal enforcement action” according to the statement which brings the ICO in line with a number of its EU-based counterparts, which collectively form the pan-European data protection body Article 29 Working Party.

In a statement Google said: “Our privacy policy respects European law and allows us to create simpler, more effective services. We have engaged fully with the authorities involved throughout this process, and we’ll continue to do so going forward.”

It remains unclear as to the exact nature of the sanctions the ICO will take should Google fail to meet its data protection concerns.

Last year Google unified its data privacy policies last year to better reflect its diversified range of services.