EFF Releases Letter to Google about Reader Privacy and Google Book Search

The Electronic Frontier Foundation has released a letter to Google about reader privacy and Google Book Search.

Here's an excerpt:

  1. Protection Against Disclosure: Readers should be able to use Google books without worrying that the government or a third party is reading over their shoulder. Google needs to promise that it will protect reader records by responding only to properly-issued warrants from law enforcement and court orders from third parties. It also must promise that it will let readers know if anyone has demanded access to information about them.
  2. Limited Tracking: Just as readers can anonymously browse books in a library or bookstore, they should also be able to search, browse, and preview Google books without being forced to register or provide any personal information to Google. And for any of its Google Book Search services, Google must not keep logging information longer than 30 days. Google should also not link any information it collects about reader use of Google Book Search to that reader’s usage of any other Google services without specific, affirmative consent.
  3. User Control: Readers should have complete control of their purchases and purchasing data. Readers should be able to delete their records and have extensive permissions controls for their "bookshelves" or any other reading displays to prevent others from seeing their reading activities. Readers should be able to “give” books to anyone, including to themselves, without tracking. Google also should not reveal any information about Google book use to credit card processors or any other third parties.
  4. User Transparency: Readers should know what information is being collected and maintained about them and when and why reader information has been disclosed. Google needs to develop a robust, enforceable privacy policy and publish the number and type of demands for reader information that are received on an annual basis.

Read more about it at "Don't Let Google Close the Book on Reader Privacy!."

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