Why Does it Matter?
Well, for lots of reasons really:
- It demonstrates that even the big guys with access to huge resources and with access to cutting edge technology get data protection basics wrong (this isn't a view shared by Google, who maintain that their policy and the changes which have been made to it are compliant with European data protection laws).
- The open battle with Google is sending out a clear message to all organisations that privacy regulators are particularly concerned about those organisations with access to vast amounts of user data secured through the provision of 'free' services with the potential for misuse of such data and abuse of the customer relationship through an imbalance between the organisation and the individual (often through the individual's reliance or dependency on 'free' services accessed through a common platform - a risk which is heightened when the way in which the individual's data is being used and shared isn't transparent or changed without the individual's consent) - this is a concern shared by the European Commission and a key driver behind the new European data protection laws.
- The ongoing battle with Google demonstrates a level of co-ordination between European regulators which we haven't really seen before, but its a sign of things to come as and when European data protection laws are overhauled
Why Should I Care?