The Danish government has decided to ban Google services from schools in the city of Heslingor, a first that is only the beginning.
While Google has just suffered a record fine in Russia, the day is definitely not good for the Californian company. The search engine has just seen its Chromebooks and its Google Workspace application banned from certain Danish schools. The government of the Scandinavian country took this decision, he who fears for the historical security of the computer data of young students.
It all started last week when the country’s personal data protection agency, Datatilsynet, issued its verdict on the Google tools being used in classrooms across the country. According to the state agency, Google Workspace tools, i.e. Google Docs, Drive, Calendar or Gmail do not meet the prerequisites required by European GDPR law.
Google collects data from Danish students
The agency discovered in the Google Workspace T&Cs that users’ personal data could flow to another country, for “system improvement” purposes, says Google. This discovery is against the GDPR and banning the use of Google in Danish schools is a better source of the answer.
But Danish concerns do not rest on nothing. Indeed, in 2020, the city of Helsingor alerted the authorities after a personal data breach was observed on site. This city of 60,000 inhabitants, located north of Copenhagen, was the study center of Datatilsynet.
The company found links linking Google to this data leak, so it asked the city to stop using the brand’s devices. She also communicated on her wish for such a device to apply to other municipalities in the days and weeks to come.
Could a similar situation happen in France?
According to Datatilsynet, Google uses its services to collect mass information without the knowledge of users who generally do not see the problem. For its part, the giant of new technologies tried to defend itself. According to a company spokesperson, the data is never used for advertising or commercial purposes.
It should be noted that in France the question of whether or not to use tools such as the Google Suite is currently under debate. A recent study found that using Google Analytics was also against GDPR regulations, with data traveling to the United States for analysis.
On the Google side, the company is trying to buy time and promises that data tracking and “sovereignty” tools will be given to Europe by the end of the year. These services should make it possible to have better control over the data transfers that take place every second.