The state of Connecticut wants to know what sort of information Google's Street View cars collected from its residents and has issued the equivalent of a subpoena to get its hands on the data.
The civil investigative demand, which was issued today, according to reports, gives Google until December 17 to hand over the data so that the state can determine if Google broke any of its laws. In October, the Federal Trade Commission closed its inquiry over the collection of data from unsecured wireless networks because it was satisfied that the company had improved its privacy practices.
Still, other U.S. states and other countries aren't satisfied and are conducting their own investigations. In a statement, Connecticut Attorney General Richard Blumenthal said:
We need to verify what confidential information the company surreptitiously and wrongfully collected and stored. We are compelling the company to grant my office access to data to determine whether emails, passwords, web-browsing and other information was improperly intercepted, for the same reasons that other law enforcement agencies abroad have done so. Reviewing this information is vital because Google's story changed, first claiming only fragments were collected, then acknowledging entire emails.
The company has refused requests from Blumenthal's office, despite allowing other governments, including Canada, access to the data. In a statement, a Google spokesperson said:
We did not want and have never used the payload data in any of our products and services. We want to delete this data as soon as possible and will continue to work with the authorities to determine the best way forward, as well as to answer their further questions and concerns.