Google has failed to meet a deadline to hand over data picked up when it was carrying out its Street View mapping project.
Data protection officials in Hamburg, Germany, requested that the company hand over data about the online activities of some people that was collected accidentally over wireless networks.
Google provided written answers to questions posed by the German officials by the deadline on Wednesday, but not a hard drive that contained the data.
Reports claim Google was uncertain that it was permitted to hand over the drive, because doing so might breach German telecommunications law.
A spokesperson for Google said, "Since our announcement two weeks ago that we had mistakenly been collecting WiFi payload data, we've been working hard to address the concerns of data protection authorities around the world. The data protection authority in Hamburg has made a number of requests, including to be given access to an original hard drive containing the payload data, and to a Street View car."
"We want to co-operate with these requests - indeed, we have already given access to a car - but as granting access to payload data creates legal challenges in Germany, which we need to review, we are continuing to discuss the appropriate legal and logistical process for making the data available. We hope, given more time, to be able to resolve this difficult issue."