Google and Facebook are the two companies with probably the largest amount of personal data. This data is present on the basis of trust, which was questioned in the Cambridge Analytica case, where Facebook was held accountable for data leak of a massive amount of people. The integration of these platforms in our lives have been so much that we have failed to realise just how much data Google has. Recently, a similar case has come to light.
This is a photo of a particular secret military base exposed by Google Earth.
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Google earth, a computer program that renders a 3D representation of Earth based on satellite imagery, has accidently revealed Taiwan’s secret military bases, and without a doubt some people won’t be happy with the news. This was exposed with Google Earth’s latest update which meant to show public locations in Taipei, New Taipei, Taoyuan, and Taichung, and officials in Taiwan formed a task force to work with Google to blur out the new maps. Currently, the layout of the exposed bases and types of mobile missile launchers are all still visible. It is being reported that the Taiwanese military will also “take examinations” to help prevent this from happening again. That includes working to camouflage other military bases and structures across the country.
Although, this looks like a major error, officials have declared this as a cause of concern, but have tried to calm down the situation by stating that there is no need to panic.
Taiwan and Google have had a somewhat checkered history when it comes to this type of mapping data. Previously in 2016, Taiwan asked Google to censor a military base on Taiping Island in the South China Sea. The Taiwanese government also had issues with Apple Maps when it exposed another military installation in Hsinchu.
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Even in the United States, preventive measures were taken to prevent sensitive photos and imagery to be leaked. Despite all this fuss, Google Earth still remains one of the most popular apps on the internet and with Google continuously working to allow the app to view more and more places which every single update, it won’t be anytime soon that Google would be shown restrictions on access of certain sites.