Privacy concerns when it comes to Google products are not really new, the company is regularly scrutinized in different countries about data collection and advertising practices. Now the Dutch government has decided to limit the use of Google Chrome and ChromeOS in schools due to data privacy concerns.
Bleeping Computer reports that the Dutch Ministry of Education has placed restrictions on the use of Chrome and ChromeOS in schools until at least August 2023. The move was initiated for several reasons, including concerns about how much student data is being collected and shared with advertising partners, and a lack of transparency about where the data is actually stored.
Officials have signed a letter to the Dutch Parliament explaining their concerns and recommending privacy and data security measures to be taken when using the aforementioned Google products. They also noted that they have held meetings with various major technology companies, including Google, Microsoft and Zoom, about data protection issues and the need to be more transparent about how user data is being used by their respective products.
Google has agreed to release new versions for Chrome and ChromeOS by next year, promising that they will be more in line with the requirements of the Dutch education sector. The Dutch watchdog will review these versions after release before giving them a green light.
Until August 2023, schools can continue to use existing versions of Chrome and ChromeOS, provided they implement the security and privacy measures recommended by the Dutch Ministry of Education.
Source: Tweede Kamer der Staten-Generaal via Bleeping Computer.