EU Says Search Engines Must Follow Rules

The EU regulators, operating under the “Article 29 Working Party” name have plans to release a detailed report on search engines in the coming months. The group said, “As the use of search engines becomes a daily routine for an ever growing number of citizens, the protection of the users’ privacy and the guaranteeing of their rights, such as the right to access to their data and the right to information as provided for by the applicable data protection regulations, remain the core issues of the ongoing debate.”
It went on to say, “Search engines fall under the EU Data Protection Directive 95/46/EC if there are controllers
collecting users’ IP addresses or search history information, and therefore have to comply with relevant provisions.”

“These provisions also apply to such controllers who have their headquarters outside the EU, but only an establishment in one of the EU Member States, or who use automated equipment based in one of the Member States for the purposes of processing personal data.”
Google said it is committed to working with the EU regulators and protecting users privacy. Yahoo did not comment and Microsoft said companies should delete the IP address from stored information. The report by the Article 29 Working Party is scheduled to be released in April.

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