Pokemon GO CEO linked to Google 'Wi-Spy' privacy scandal

Niantic Labs CEO reportedly led Google’s Geo division during a major privacy scandal.
Niantic Labs CEO reportedly led Google’s Geo division during a major privacy scandal.

Even after quelling the initial privacy issues that arose with the launch of Pokemon Go, Niantic Labs CEO John Hanke has a spotted history when it comes to privacy that may leave some users uneasy.

Hanke was the head of Google's Geo division during the “Wi-Spy” scandal which found Google illegally collected digital traffic from unencrypted home networks including passwords, email messages, medical records, financial information, audio and video files, according to The Intercept.

The division was in charge of the vehicles used to collect the data for what would become Google's Street View feature.

When Niantic broke away from Google, it reportedly brought with it a patent that discusses how a game such as Pokemon Go could be used to collect real-world data from a user without their knowledge, the publication said.

Last month, the Electronic Privacy Information Center wrote a letter to the FTC to investigate the privacy risks of the game citing the games collection of detailed location history and camera access.