Israeli Lawmakers Discuss Google Street View


JERUSALEM (JTA) — A team of Knesset Cabinet members met to discuss security and privacy concerns surrounding the operation of Google Street View in Israel.

Google Street View, an on-line mapping tool which provides a three-dimensional view of buildings, landmarks, and streets around the world, is set to be operated in Israel in coming months.

The ministerial team on Monday instructed experts to work to protect vital public interests and decided that cooperation with Google would continue in order to operate the service in Israel as soon as possible, according to the Prime Minister’s Office.

Israeli officials reportedly are concerned that the service would be used by terrorists to help them carry out attacks on Israel.

Google reportedly plans to photograph only Tel Aviv, Jerusalem, and Haifa. Certain areas of the cities reportedly will not be allowed to be photographed for security reasons.

The ministers were expected to discuss whether to allow Google to photograph the streets where the prime minister’s and president’s residences, the government compound and foreign embassies are located.

Google Street View is available in 27 countries.