A new race to produce aerial maps by the technological giants iPhone and Google could see spyplanes photographing sunbathers in their back gardens.
The race to become the first to produce maps so detailed they can show up objects just four inches wide has sparked controversy over privacy laws.
Google has admitted it has already sent planes over cities while iPhone parent Apple has acquired a firm using spy-in-the-sky technology so powerful it could potentially see into homes through skylights and windows.
Nick Pickles, director of Big Brother Watch, warned that privacy could be sacrificed: “The next generation of maps is taking us over the garden fence. You won’t be able to sunbathe in your garden without worrying about an Apple or Google plane buzzing overhead taking pictures.”