There have been rumours Google have been deleting the links to AOL keyword data files, but I haven’t seen any evidence of it myself.
I’ve come across a few online applications which allow you to search the AOL keyword data:
Anyone got any more?
And then there’s a few opportunists who are trying to sell it on Ebay, would you believe.
Obviously, this highlights the problem of data security at search engines. They may have the best intentions in the world, but all it takes is someone, somewhere, to screw up…
The search engines may feel some heat from legislators:
“AOL’s recent privacy gaffe that exposed users’ search histories may breathe new life into a proposal to slap strict rules on what data Internet companies may collect.”
Personally, I don’t think the collection of data is a necessarily a privacy problem. It’s the ease with which annoymous information can be tracked back to an individual, indentifiable person that is a potential problem.