EU privacy regulators reprimand Internet search engines

Article 29 Working Party, a group of EU privacy regulators, have reprimanded the three major search engines Google, Yahoo! and Microsoft’s Bing for storing data search queries for too long and by so doing overlooking the bloc’s Data Protection Directive.

EU regulators warned the companies that their “methods of making users’ search data anonymous” were out of step with the EU’s rules on data protection.

Copies of these letters were also sent to the US Federal Trade Commission (FTC), asking whether the search engines’ use of search data complied with their own Federal Trade Commission Act (which prohibits “unfair or deceptive practices) and to Viviane Reding, vice-president of the European Commission responsible for justice, fundamental rights and citizenship.

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