I read an article in today's Age entitled Australia denies targeting Google over web filter. I find this comment by our glorious Communications Overlord to quite informative.
"It is possible that as Google drove past your home, if you didn't have the password protection and you were typing, you were doing your online banking, passing personal information in a transaction, as they drove past they could have captured that," Conroy said.
Informative that Conroy yet again has shown he doesn't get the internet. He's talking about the protection that your wireless router has. WPA or WEP or whatever else you're using. Which is fine to stop my neighbour downloading his pr0n off my network, but Mr Conroy that doesn't stop anybody else reading it when it goes down the pipe to the wider web.
"Oh no, my banking details - if only there was a scheme to prevent people reading my passwords". Enter the saviour of the piece - HTTPS. You see Mr Conroy when data of a sensitive nature is exchanged between two parties they encrypt it. Yes that's right, no bank in the world sends data in clear text. So even if Google harvests an exchange between you and your bank Senator - it's meaningless noise to them; they can't read it (at least without extensive effort/time/money). I dare you to find me the name of a bank that doesn't use HTTPS. I double dare you [insert line from Pulp Fiction] .....
On a philosophical note, if Google harvests data off a unsecured network then the person deserves to have Google exploit their location. People will only learn when they suffer.
Update: Check this out - /sigh