US & Canada

Google fined in Street View probe

A Google Street View car in Amsterdam
Image caption Data gathered by Street View cars in more than 30 countries included passwords, emails and other data

Google has been fined $25,000 (£15,700) after US authorities found the internet giant stalled an investigation into its Street View mapping feature.

The Federal Communications Commission said Google "deliberately impeded and delayed" the investigation for months.

The online search leader did not respond to requests for information and documents, according to the agency.

The inquiry began in 2010 after Google said Street View cars had inadvertently logged unsecured Wi-Fi data.

Information gathered by passing Street View cars in more than 30 countries included passwords, emails and other data that was being transmitted wirelessly over unprotected routers, according to the FCC.

The FCC said it still had "significant factual questions" about the Street View project that have not yet been been answered.

The agency has subpoenaed a Google engineer who developed the software code that the company used to collect the data.

But the unnamed engineer invoked his Fifth Amendment rights against incriminating himself, so that he would not have to testify.

The California-based internet giant disputed the FCC findings.

"As the FCC notes in their report, we provided all the materials the regulators felt they needed to conclude their investigation and we were not found to have violated any laws," the company said in a prepared statement.

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