There are over 1 billion people using Google Maps every year. This has lead to many legal disputes over the years and has forced Google to allow users to blur Street View and Satellite View images that have been taken without their consent. You must realize though, that once it’s blurred, you can’t have it reversed.
If you head over to the Google Product Forums help page, you will see hundreds of posts with titles like “Getting our house unblurred,” and “Impossible to remove blur.”
This means that if a previous owner of a property asks Google to blur their property, once a new owner moved in, they will never see that property unblurred. Google even states in their policy:
Our privacy is a major concern nowadays which is why I opted to have my property blurred from Google Maps.
How to Blur Your Home on Google Maps
Head over to Google Maps and type in your home or business address. On the left-hand side, you will see a photo of the address with the “360” symbol on the bottom. Click that photo and you will be brought down to Street View.
At the top you should see three vertical dots next to the address. Click on those dots and choose “Report a Problem” from the drop down menu.
On the next screen you will need to adjust the image so that the area you want blurred is within the red box. Fill out the form and give them a couple of days to fulfil your request.
There are several things that you may want to blur including:
- Home property
- Business property
- License plates
The reason why we may wish to have our homes blurred, along with privacy is security. Criminals can easily head over to Google Maps, type in an address, turn on Street View, and check out a residence or building of interest to perform virtual reconnaissance before they break and enter or perform some other nasty deed.
Criminals would be using Google Maps to look for the following:
- Locate entrances to buildings
- Determine locations of security cameras, gates, etc
- Find good hiding places such as in shrubs and other areas
- Find holes or weak spots in perimeter fences
- Locate utility boxes (power, water, gas, etc)
- See what make, model, and color of vehicle a building occupant or resident drives
- See if locks, guards, dogs, etc, are normally present
- Measure distances between objects (using Google Earth) to determine how quickly it would take to run or drive from one point to another.
I think you can admit, it is pretty scary what somebody could find out about your property without ever stepping foot on the street.