Google, Internet search giant, was fined 145,000 euros by a German regulator for collecting wireless-network data by its cars taking photos for the Street View service.
The data protection office in the northern German city of Hamburg imposed the fine for the violation of privacy during the years 2008 to 2010.
In 2010, Google admitted the Street View cars it uses to collect data for its Google Maps service also collected emails, passwords, photos, logs of chats, and more data from open Wifi sources in a number of European countries, including Germany.
Google told the Hamburg regulator that it had never been its intention to store personal data.
Under European regulations, the maximum fine for an accidental violation is 150,000 euros – but data protection supervisor Johannes Caspar called for that amount to be increased in future.