Belgium to sue Google for failing to blur military sites on maps service

GERMAN PRESS AGENCY - DPA
BRUSSELS
Published 28.09.2018 17:28
Updated 29.09.2018 10:38
A woman and her child play on a Google sign at the World Artificial Intelligence Conference (WAIC) in Shanghai on September 26, 2018. (AFP Photo)
A woman and her child play on a Google sign at the World Artificial Intelligence Conference (WAIC) in Shanghai on September 26, 2018. (AFP Photo)

The Belgian defense ministry plans to take Google to court for failing to blur sensitive military installations on the company's maps service, local media reported Friday.

Military sites including the Kleine Brogel air base near the Dutch border, nuclear plants, the country's crisis center and petroleum installations in the Port of Antwerp can currently be easily seen on the satellite images used by Google Maps.

For security reasons, the defense ministry had asked the US-based online giant to pixellate several sites, the Sudpresse newspaper group reported.

"Having established that this was not done, it will therefore launch a complaint against Google," a spokesperson for the defense ministry told Sudpresse.

Google Maps has blurred similar sites located in France, according to the Belga news agency.

A spokesman for Google expressed regret over the decision by the Belgian defense ministry.

"We have been working closely with them for more than two years, making changes to our maps where asked and legal under Belgian law. We plan to continue working with them in that spirit of cooperation," the spokesman told dpa.

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