South Korea Targets Google’s Admob Over Data Concerns




At the rate that reports keep flying in about Google ruffling the feathers of governments regarding data collection and privacy you would think the United Nations might set up a subcommittee on Google ‘concerns’.

Now we can add South Korea to the list of governments that feel the need to dig into Google’s efforts in their country as they relate to data and their citizens.

Reuters reports

Google Inc’s Seoul office was raided on Tuesday on suspicion its mobile advertising unit AdMob had illegally collected location data without consent, South Korean police said, the latest setback to the Internet search firm’s Korean operations.

The probe into suspected collection of data on where a user is located without consent highlights growing concerns about possible misuse of private information as the use of mobile devices such as smartphones and tablets increases.

In the past I have been rather harsh on Google’s competitor, Facebook, and their ask for forgiveness rather than permission approach to data and privacy. It looks like Google might have a little bit of that same attitude since they continue to find themselves in trouble in different places but for the same reasons.

Now with Admob being put into the crosshairs of the South Korean government there are even more options to see if Google goes too far regarding data, privacy and more. The South Koreans have already joined the Street View crew with regard to seeing if Google overstepped their boundaries in collection of personal data from their Street View cars and tricycles and unicycles and whatever else they use to record every last inch of the earth.

But Street View and privacy are so yesterday! The Koreans are moving forward with their look into the search giant.

“We suspect AdMob collected personal location information without consent or approval from the Korean Communication Commission,” a South Korean police official said.

A Google spokesman confirmed that the police had visited its Seoul office and told Reuters the company was cooperating with their investigation.

Well, you gotta give Google credit for trying I suppose since it appears that the company with the most data will win the day in the new location based, local online world tat is developing right before our very eyes.

How do you feel about giving information about your whereabouts or activities without your knowledge? Are you just interested in having more targeted information pushed your way or would you rather not have someone tracking your every move?

What’s your take on today’s data and how it should be used?

  • http://ianmacfarlane.com Ian Macfarlane

    Android Apps have to specify the information which they transmit before being installed – any apps using AdMod advertising would need to inform users that they require access to your location.

    I’m also fairly sure that AdMob only ever collects “coarse” location (approximate location by cell tower, which can be miles out) rather than “fine” location (GPS).