Google has announced its Street View service now covers 25 UK cities including London, Manchester, Cardiff and Oxford.

Street View is an add-on to Google Maps and Google Earth that offers photographs of streets and cities.

However, many of the photographs feature passers-by who have been caught unawares, which led Google to introduce technology that blurred faces in the photographs. Street View was initially launched in the US in May 2007 and, following an investigation, was given the go ahead to launch in the UK by the Information Commissioner's Officein August last year.

Google has also revealed that if web users feel an image in Street View is inappropriate, they can be bring it to the search engine's attention by clicking the 'report a concern' button, ensuring Google investigates whether the image breaks any privacy laws.

"Street View has been hugely popular with our users in Europe and worldwide and we're thrilled it's now available in the UK for so many great cities, enabling users to see street-level panoramas of major city roads and look up and print out useful driving directions," said Google's geospatial technologist Ed Parsons.

Google has also revealed that popular children's character Wally, from the Where's Wally books is hiding in just one location in the UK that is covered by Street View. The search engine is challenging users to try and locate Wally, who sports and red and white stripped jumper and hat.

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See also: Windows Mobile and Symbian get StreetView