MOD won't go to war on Google Earth

Google Earth comes under security criticism
Google Earth comes under security criticism

Military experts have criticised Google Earth, after close-up views of a top-secret naval base in Scotland were found on the service.

According to The Sun, images of the naval base include two Vanguard Class nuclear submarines and even reveal the co ordinates of the base.

The Sun's unnamed 'military experts' believe that "a strike on our nuclear capability would cause untold devastation. Terrorists could have a field day, knowing exactly where to aim strikes to cause the maximum devastation."


With this in mind, TechRadar spoke to the MOD about the Google Earth controversy, and it insisted that no action would be taken toward Google and felt that asking the website to take the images off would be 'impractical'.

"The MOD cannot prevent satellites taking imagery of its establishments, however we ensure that steps are taken to protect highly sensitive equipment," said a spokesperson.

"It would be impractical to ask Google to withdraw images as they can be easily obtained from other sources over which we have no influence."

The spokesperson also revealed that satellite imagery comes under a different remit to aerial photography. In short, if Google had taken the pictures from a plane, the imagery could be deemed as illegal. As the images come from a satellite no actual action can be taken.

Marc Chacksfield

Marc Chacksfield is the Editor In Chief, at DC Thomson. He started out life as a movie writer for numerous (now defunct) magazines and soon found himself online - editing a gaggle of gadget sites, including TechRadar, Digital Camera World and Tom's Guide UK. At Shortlist you'll find him mostly writing about movies and tech, so no change there then.