Street View faces new privacy problem in Japan

Google's service becomes Japan's ultimate nosey neighbour

Google faced another potential privacy row this week, with residents in Japan claiming that the cameras on the company's cars are placed too high.

Due to the low-rise nature of Japanese buildings, the Google cameras at the height they were had the ability to see over walls into private gardens.

Google is said to have rectified the problem by lowering the cameras by 40cm.

Respecting privacy

This is the second privacy incident regarding Google's controversial Street View service in as many days.

As TechRadar reported earlier this week, Greece has stopped Google from taking any more images, until it gives a more detailed description of what will happen with the footage in the long run.

In a statement Google admitted the problem in Japan and explained what has been done to rectify it: "We have lowered the height of the camera due to the unique characteristics of many Japanese roads; they tend to be narrow, without pavements and driveways, and houses are built close to the street.

"We think the new camera height allows us to get a high-quality image of the street while respecting the privacy of homeowners."



Content Team Lead

Marc (Twitter, Google+) is the content team lead for Future Technology, where he is in charge of a 14-strong team of journalists who write many of the wonderful stories that end up on TechRadar, and T3 magazine. Prior to this he was deputy editor of TechRadar, had a 10-month stint editing a weekly iPad magazine, written film reviews for a whole host of publications and has been an integral part of many magazines that are no longer with us.