Ireland launches probe into Google’s use of location data

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Dublin | February 04, 2020 10:37 PM

The regulator said that it had received complaints from various European consumer associations about the lack of transparency in data processing.

google, google location data, google location privacy, google data privacy, IrelandGoogle has also been under DPC investigation since May over data protection in the field of online advertising. (Reuters)

Silicon Valley giant Google is under investigation over its processing of users’ location data, the Ireland’s Data Protection Commission (DPC) announced on Tuesday. The regulator said that it had received complaints from various European consumer associations about the lack of transparency in data processing. “The Inquiry will set out to establish whether Google has a valid legal basis for processing the location data of its users and whether it meets its obligations as a data controller with regard to transparency,” said the DPC.

It is the responsibility of Ireland’s regulators to ensure compliance with the European General Data Protection Regulation, as Google’s European headquarters are in the country. Google told AFP in a statement that it will “cooperate fully” with the DPC, and says it will work closely with regulators and consumer associations across Europe. “In the last year, we have made a number of product changes to improve the level of user transparency and control over location data,” it said in a statement.

Google has also been under DPC investigation since May over data protection in the field of online advertising. The location data case was launched after Google’s parent company Alphabet released mixed financial results for the last quarter of 2019 on Monday evening, causing its share price to fall. Alphabet and Google chief executive Sundar Pichai has detailed four priority areas for 2020, including improving the privacy and security of users.

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