|Image via CrunchBase|
Led by the French, organizations in Britain, the Netherlands, Germany, Spain and Italy agreed Tuesday on the joint action, with the ultimate possibility of imposing fines or restrictions on operations across the entire 27-country European Union.
Last year the company merged 60 separate privacy policies from around the world into one universal procedure. The European organizations complain that the new policy doesn't allow users to figure out which information is kept, how it is combined by Google services, or how long the company retains it.
The fines' financial impact on Google would be limited - French privacy watchdog CNIL has the right to fine the company up to 300,000 euros ($385,000), approximately the amount it earns in three minutes, based on its projected revenue of $61 billion this year. Britain can fine up to 500,000 pounds, but rarely does.
But successful legal action would hurt Google's image and could block its ability to collect such data until it addresses the regulators' concerns.Google currently dominates the search market in Europe with almost 95 percent of the searches. That is compared to only 65 percent of searches conducted in America.
Google argues that they merged their many priacy policies in 2012 for simplicity, but they are still consistant with European laws.