Google Must Delete Raw, Uncensored Street View Photos Within Six Months In UK, Or EU Regulators Will Be Mighty Unhappy

After villagers chased the Street View cars away in Buckinghamshire, England, it became pretty obvious last year that a lot of Brits were unhappy having their houses and streets documented online.

Now, European regulators have told Google they must delete the raw images obtained by the streetcars within six months.

Google currently updates Street View annually with new photos, but the EU reckons they need to change their retention policy to just six months. The mind boggles with the time and expense that'd throw Google, so I wouldn't be surprised if this one goes to court—which is just what Google needs after being hit with an antitrust investigation by the EU last week, and the whole business over in Italy where three Google employees were convicted in a Google Video lawsuit.

One day Google will pull its services out of Europe forever, and then we'll be stuck using Bing, Symbian and Streetmap. WILL YOU BE HAPPY THEN, HUH EUROPE? [Telegraph via TechRadar]

Ed. Note: Upon closer review, it looks like the EU is asking Google to delete the RAW images within six months, but the censored ones—the ones that are live on the Google Street View—can live for as long as they want. Google wants to keep the uncensored copies for up to a year for their own reasons. Either way, this doesn't seem as big a deal as first thought. – JC