During a Q&A session with the press at Google I/O today, Google co-founder Sergey Brin allowed one participant to go off-topic and ask his question about the WiFi data collection error that was part of its Street View image capturing process. Specifically, the question was focused on internal controls to prevent this from happening again.
In short, let me just say that we screwed up. I'm not going to make any excuses about it. The answer is yes. We do have a lot of internal controls in place but obviously they didn't prevent this error from occurring. We are putting more internal controls in place and bringing in third parties to work on this issue, as well. Trust is very important to us. We are doing everything we can to preserve that trust.
Earlier today, two lawmakers asked the Federal Trade Commission if Google broke the law when it made the "mistake" of collecting WiFi and other data while shooting photos for the Street View feature within Google Maps, according to a Reuters report. The lawmakers also asked if the data collection violated a "reasonable expectation of privacy and if its actions were deceptive or illegal.