The head of Europe's privacy watchdogs said that he is still in negotiations with Google about a major data retention dispute and is confident that the search giant will change its policies. Google has claimed its data retention policy is forced on it by an EU law, but that it would keep identifiable customer data for 18 months …
If the NSA gets its way
Then they will get free access to every Google record, which will kill their business because nobody will let the NSA look over their shoulder and it will make Google illegal in the EU.
So they'll have to go back and think carefully how they can anonymize that data from day 1 and how much data they really need to collect in the first place.
Privacy is a good selling point.
But Google *is* an email provider
So on the one hand the regulator is saying that the rule applies only to telecoms providers, ISPs and email providers and so not to not Google, while on the other hand, Google is an email provider.
Regulation is a tricky thing. We hope it stops companies from doing Bad Things, but the regulators themselves seem to live in a narrow vertical world and it looks like there is a lack of thought about how, all told, companies can be in compliance with all applicable rules (at least in this case).
Still, Google is large enough to have the staff to figure it all out I suppose.