European Privacy Regulators Want More Info on Google's Policy Changes

Regulators are surprised that Google, with its extensive analytics tools, is unable to say how many people viewed its new privacy policy
By Peter Sayer
News May 25th 2012

European privacy regulators want better answers from Google about its privacy policy, and the way it informs its users about changes to it.

Last month Google responded to a questionnaire about the policy sent by the French National Commission on Computing and Liberty (CNIL), acting on behalf of the European Union's national data privacy regulators.

However, the regulators were not satisfied. On Tuesday CNIL wrote again to Google CEO Larry Page, asking the company to elaborate on some of its answers.

One of the first things the regulators had wanted to know was how many people had consulted the main site for Google's revised privacy policy. Google said it couldn't provide a number, to the astonishment of the regulators.

"Given Google's extensive development and use of analytic tools, we are surprised that Google has not measured the impact of the campaign in order to assess efficiency of this information. Could you please confirm that you have no such information?" they asked in their letter Tuesday.

Google also failed to detail and explain the contents of the cookies it stores on users' computers, prompting the regulators to repeat that question.