Satellite map images with missing or unclear data

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Some locations on free, publicly-viewable satellite map services, have missing, incomplete, or unclear map data. In some cases, these regions have been intentionally digitally obscured or blurred.[1] Westchester County, New York, for example, has asked Google to blur potential terror targets (such as an amusement park, a beach, and parking lots) from its satellite imagery.[2]

In some cases, censorship of certain sites has been removed. When Google Maps was launched, images of the White House and United States Capitol in Washington, D.C. were blurred out; current versions of Google Maps and Google Earth show these sites uncensored, but with out-of-date imagery.[3]


Countries in official contact with Google Maps

During talks with the Indian government, Google issued a statement saying "Google has been talking and will continue to talk to the Indian government about any security concerns it may have regarding Google Earth."[4]

The Australian government has decided that images of sensitive areas are not a risk, due to poor level of detail.[5] It was reported that in the lead-up to the APEC forum in Sydney held in September 2007 certain key locations in images of the city's central business district, where APEC leaders were meeting, might have been intentionally reduced in resolution; however, Google has indicated that the change was unrelated to APEC, while the NSW police said that they knew nothing about the change in Google's images.[6] As of December 2007, much of inner Sydney still remains blurred.

The government of Malaysia has stated that it will not ask Google to censor sensitive areas because that would identify the locations it deemed to be sensitive.[7]

List of map locations with missing or unclear data

Middle East


Coordinates Object Comment Link
30°34′2″N 47°46′6″E / 30.56722°N 47.76833°E / 30.56722; 47.76833 (Shatt al Arab Hotel) Shatt al Arab Hotel, Basra[8] Possibly censored due to security risks after Coalition Forces seized insurgent documents which used maps to plan attacks.[9] No longer censored. Babylon, listed as Babil, is blurred out. There is clear evidence of farming all around the city, yet the city itself is grayed out. [10] [4]


Coordinates Object Comment Link
27°51′0″N 65°10′0″E / 27.85°N 65.166667°E / 27.85; 65.166667 (Predator Air Base) Predator Air Base[11] Unmanned Predators. Images from 2006 were removed. Images from 2007 have runway markings removed. [5]

East / South Asia


Tibet/Xinjiang Province (full) of China (but Lhasa doesn't appear to be), Northern areas of Pakistan (areas include Mansehra (full), Abbottabad (partial), Balakot (full))


Coordinates Object Comment Link
24°17′21″N 153°58′41″E / 24.28917°N 153.97806°E / 24.28917; 153.97806 (Minami Torishima Airport) Minami Torishima Airport[12] Easternmost territory in Japan. Runway oversaturated in white. Runway markings invisible. [6]


Rounded irregular areas overlayed with older imagery, etc.

Coordinates Object Comment Link
24°12′22″N 120°36′26″E / 24.206117°N 120.607181°E / 24.206117; 120.607181 (northwestern Taichung (Taizhong) Taiwan) Taichung Older imagery of Cruise missile base overlays newer science park [7]
25°02′42″N 121°36′12″E / 25.044976°N 121.60346°E / 25.044976; 121.60346 (Nangang, Taipei (Taibei) Taiwan) Nangang military reservation Oval overlay [8]
24°12′26″N 120°48′01″E / 24.207203°N 120.800278°E / 24.207203; 120.800278 (Xinshe, Taiwan) Xinshe military reservations Two military reservations, cut and pasted [9]
24°09′04″N 120°44′11″E / 24.15111°N 120.736259°E / 24.15111; 120.736259 (Taiping, Taiwan) Taiping military reservations Military reservations, cut and pasted [10]
24°11′11″N 120°39′03″E / 24.18626°N 120.65074°E / 24.18626; 120.65074 (Shuinan, Taichung (Taizhong), Taiwan) Shuinan Airport (RCLG) Airport, cut and pasted. (Note also traces of circular road to the west, that some have speculated to be traces of a furtive nuclear experiment.) [11]
25°03′25″N 121°14′33″E / 25.056911°N 121.242542°E / 25.056911; 121.242542 (Taoyuan Military Airport, Taiwan) Taoyuan Military Airport (RCGM) Ends of runway whited-out. Compare with civilian airport to the north. [12]
25°02′50″N 121°35′29″E / 25.047352°N 121.591471°E / 25.047352; 121.591471 (Military headquarters, Taiwan) Military headquarters building in Nangang, Taipei, Taiwan Pixelization [13]

The above are but a few examples. Pixelization also occurs for bases like zh:成功嶺.



Ile du Ramier, Toulouse (Link), the location of the National Organization for Powder and Explosives (preparation of Phosgene for the aerospace industry and other form of explosive gas including Sulfur Mustard). The AZF chemical factory is pixelated, but Google Maps feature links to a detailed photo of the factory.


Coordinates Object Comment Link
50°57′38″N 6°2′32″E / 50.96056°N 6.04222°E / 50.96056; 6.04222 (NATO Air Base Geilenkirchen) NATO Air Base Geilenkirchen [14]

The Netherlands

Coordinates Object Comment Link
51°26′54.21″N 03°36′17.60″E / 51.4483917°N 3.604889°E / 51.4483917; 3.604889 (Vlissingen oil tanks) Vlissingen, Oil tanks [15]
51°27′6.63″N 05°22′48.14″E / 51.4518417°N 5.3800389°E / 51.4518417; 5.3800389 (Eindhoven Airport Air Force Base) Eindhoven Airport Air Force Base [16]
51°33′06.45″N 04°56′5.56″E / 51.5517917°N 4.9348778°E / 51.5517917; 4.9348778 (Gilze-Rijen Air Base) Gilze-Rijen Air Base [17]
52°05′35.97″N 04°20′39.05″E / 52.093325°N 4.3441806°E / 52.093325; 4.3441806 (Huis ten Bosch) Huis ten Bosch residence of the Dutch Royal Family [18]
52°05′41.95″N 05°8′21.38″E / 52.0949861°N 5.1392722°E / 52.0949861; 5.1392722 (Utrecht centre) centre of Utrecht Apparent mistake[13] [19]
52°06′35.68″N 04°19′35.75″E / 52.1099111°N 4.3265972°E / 52.1099111; 4.3265972 (Nato C3 Agency) Nato C3 Agency [20]
52°07′25.94″N 05°21′30.12″E / 52.1238722°N 5.3583667°E / 52.1238722; 5.3583667 (Soestdijk Palace) Soestdijk Palace residence of the Dutch Royal Family [21]
52°04′43″N 4°18′58″E / 52.078589°N 4.315985°E / 52.078589; 4.315985 (Department of Defense) Department of Defense [22]
52°08′01.89″N 05°16′23.45″E / 52.1338583°N 5.2731806°E / 52.1338583; 5.2731806 (Kamp Zeist + Soesterberg Air Force Base) Kamp Zeist (Lockerbie Trials) + Soesterberg Air Force Base [23]
52°04′51.30″N 04°20′12.98″E / 52.080917°N 4.3369389°E / 52.080917; 4.3369389 (New American embassy) New American embassy location, under construction [24]
52°08′16.98″N 04°30′46.29″E / 52.13805°N 4.5128583°E / 52.13805; 4.5128583 (Paleis Noordeinde and Royal Stables) Paleis Noordeinde and Royal Stables Work palace of the Dutch Queen [25]
52°14′55.40″N 04°26′22.74″E / 52.248722°N 4.43965°E / 52.248722; 4.43965 (ESA) part of Noordwijk aan Zee [26]
52°22′28.06″N 04°55′2.06″E / 52.3744611°N 4.9172389°E / 52.3744611; 4.9172389 (Royal Netherlands Navy base) Amsterdam, Royal Netherlands Navy base [27]
52°23′31.28″N 05°54′48.83″E / 52.3920222°N 5.9135639°E / 52.3920222; 5.9135639 ('t Harde (1)) 't Harde (1), Army exercise area [28]
52°24′20.49″N 05°53′59.54″E / 52.4056917°N 5.8998722°E / 52.4056917; 5.8998722 ('t Harde (2)) 't Harde (2), Army exercise area [29]
52°57′26.37″N 04°47′26.30″E / 52.957325°N 4.790639°E / 52.957325; 4.790639 (Den Helder, Naval installations) Den Helder, Naval installations [30]
52°16′29.38″N 06°53′38.11″E / 52.2748278°N 6.8939194°E / 52.2748278; 6.8939194 (Twente Air Force Base) Twente Air Force Base [31]
52°26′47.00″N 05°59′40.00″E / 52.44639°N 5.99444°E / 52.44639; 5.99444 (Prinses Margriet Army Base) Prinses Margriet Army Base [32]
51°39′27.54″N 5°42′12.58″E / 51.65765°N 5.7034944°E / 51.65765; 5.7034944 (Volkel Air Force Base) Volker Air Force Base [33]
52°02′12.85″N 05°40′45.82″E / 52.0369028°N 5.6793944°E / 52.0369028; 5.6793944 (Command and Control Support) Command and Control Support [34]
52°38′24.6″N 06°43′44.50″E / 52.640167°N 6.729028°E / 52.640167; 6.729028 (Unknown) Two sites on Dutch-German border. [35]


Coordinates Object Comment Link
66°16′0″N 179°15′0″E / 66.266667°N 179.25°E / 66.266667; 179.25 (Egvekinot) Possibly a Russian ICBM Complex, near town Egvekinot, Russia [36] There is a private 1.35km north-south runway being concealed here according to

Also appears to have been modified on Bing Maps displays a duplicate spliced image of an area to the southeast.

56°6′30″N 36°49′46″E / 56.10833°N 36.82944°E / 56.10833; 36.82944 (Millergof palace) Millergof A private palace of the Gazprom CEO Alexey Miller[14]. The aerial photos are available on Panoramio and Terraserver, while being censored in Yahoo Maps, Yandex Maps and Wikimapia (replaced by older imagery[15]). [38]


Coordinates Object Comment Link
41°21′47″N 2°09′52″E / 41.363072638666786°N 2.164306640625°E / 41.363072638666786; 2.164306640625 (Castell de Montjuïc) Castell de Montjuïc No longer censored. [39]
37°39′29″N 1°00′44″W / 37.658157°N 1.012094°W / 37.658157; -1.012094 (Helipuerto de Cartagena) Helipuerto [40]


Coordinates Object Comment Link
38°45′40″N 27°05′01″W / 38.761178°N 27.08353°W / 38.761178; -27.08353 (Lajes Field) Lajes Field Portuguese Air Force Air Base nº 4. SAR base housing Aerospatiale SA330 Puma and C212 Aviocar aircraft for this purpose. The US Air Force 65th ABW is a detachment colocated here to support transient aircraft to the Middle East, Southwest Asia and Africa. Civilian terminal on west side of field approved for commercial traffic, refuelling and stopover operations. [41]
38°40′46″N 9°19′19″W / 38.679429°N 9.321814°W / 38.679429; -9.321814 (NATO Base) NATO Base Joint Command - Atlantic NATO Headquarters in Oeiras near Lisbon [42]
38°39′52″N 9°08′53″W / 38.664452°N 9.148028°W / 38.664452; -9.148028 (Base Naval do Alfeite) Base Naval do Alfeite Portuguese Navy Base, near Lisbon. Partial digital censorship. [43]
38°42′29″N 9°02′03″W / 38.708170°N 9.03416°W / 38.708170; -9.03416 (Montijo Base Aerea #6 (Air Base)) Montijo Air Base Used by Portuguese Air Force mainly for SAR and Transport purposes. AW101, C130 and C295 Base.See more info under Força Aérea Portuguesa [44]
38°33′05″N 9°06′08″W / 38.55139°N 9.10211°W / 38.55139; -9.10211 (Nato Depot) Nato Fernão Ferro Former Nato ammunition depot [45]
38°33′36″N 9°10′59″W / 38.5601°N 9.18314°W / 38.5601; -9.18314 (Armada Centro de recepção de Comunicações Fonte da Telha) Armada Fonte da Telha Navy Communications Center - Partially visible - Google's error ? [46]
38°42′15″N 9°12′24″W / 38.7042°N 9.20677°W / 38.7042; -9.20677 (Ministério da Defesa) Ministério da Defesa Defense Ministry Offices Lisbon [47]

North America

United States

Coordinates Object Comment Link
40°11′22.16″N 112°55′33.70″W / 40.1894889°N 112.926028°W / 40.1894889; -112.926028 (Michael Aaf (Dougway Proving Ground)) Michael Aaf (Dougway Proving Ground) Building blacked out, areas clearly retouched.
37°58′47.19″N 84°25′7.97″W / 37.979775°N 84.4188806°W / 37.979775; -84.4188806 (Home of William Hurt) Two houses blurred by missing data. Falsely reported as the home of actor William Hurt. Visible on Bing Maps and Google Street View [48]
38°53′51.61″N 77°02′11.58″W / 38.8976694°N 77.03655°W / 38.8976694; -77.03655 (White House and environs)T The White House and environs. Superimposed low resolution imagery from an earlier date in Google. [49]
38°53′22.99″N 77°0′01″W / 38.8897194°N 77.00028°W / 38.8897194; -77.00028 (U.S. Capitol and environs)T The United States Capitol and environs. Superimposed low resolution imagery from an earlier date in Google. [50]
38°55′16.64″N 77°04′01″W / 38.9212889°N 77.06694°W / 38.9212889; -77.06694 (Naval Observatory/Residence of Vice President Dick Cheney) Number One Observatory Circle, official residence of the Vice President of the United States Superimposed low resolution imagery from an earlier date in Google. [51]
39°27′24.7″N 76°09′13.7″W / 39.456861°N 76.153806°W / 39.456861; -76.153806 (Aberdeen Proving Ground) Aberdeen Proving Ground Lower resolution than surrounding areas, with irregular boundaries. [52]
39°29′50.31″N 74°22′36.63″W / 39.4973083°N 74.3768417°W / 39.4973083; -74.3768417 (Section of Great Bay) Section of Great Bay, near New Jersey. Visible on Bing Maps and Map24 - Visible on Google Earth as of February 2008. [53]
40°52′4.20″N 72°52′25.28″W / 40.867833°N 72.8736889°W / 40.867833; -72.8736889 (Brookhaven National Laboratory) Brookhaven National Laboratory - Upton, New York Blurred on Google maps [54]
40°54′58.42″N 73°07′24.98″W / 40.9162278°N 73.1236056°W / 40.9162278; -73.1236056 (Stony Brook University) Stony Brook University Visible on Bing Maps on both aerial and bird's eye view with high resolution. Blurred on Google. [55]
41°01′58.78″N 73°46′25.74″W / 41.0329944°N 73.7738167°W / 41.0329944; -73.7738167 (White Plains train station) White Plains train station Visible on Bing Maps on both aerial and bird's eye view with high resolution. Blurred on Google. Street View is also available all in the blurry area. [56]
41°15′25.23″N 73°58′48.94″W / 41.2570083°N 73.9802611°W / 41.2570083; -73.9802611 (Tomkins Cove (quarry?)) Tomkins Cove [57]
41°04′06.76″N 73°42′14.14″W / 41.0685444°N 73.7039278°W / 41.0685444; -73.7039278 (Westchester County Airport) Westchester County Airport, White Plains, New York [58]
41°10′43.30″N 72°12′23.99″W / 41.178694°N 72.2066639°W / 41.178694; -72.2066639 (Plum Island Animal Disease Center) Plum Island Animal Disease Center Blurred on Google. [59]
41°09′06″N 73°52′08″W / 41.151667°N 73.868889°W / 41.151667; -73.868889 (Sing Sing Correctional Facility) Sing Sing Correctional Facility [60]
40°57′39.86″N 72°51′52.83″W / 40.9610722°N 72.864675°W / 40.9610722; -72.864675 (Shoreham Nuclear Power Plant) Shoreham Nuclear Power Plant, Wading River, New York Decommissioned [61]
41°16′11.08″N 73°57′08.40″W / 41.2697444°N 73.952333°W / 41.2697444; -73.952333 (Indian Point Energy Center) Indian Point Energy Center, Westchester, New York [62]
41°21′22.48″N 74°03′13.63″W / 41.3562444°N 74.0537861°W / 41.3562444; -74.0537861 (Camp Buckner Summer Installation) United States Military Academy Camp Buckner Summer Installation [63]
41°21′22.48″N 74°03′13.63″W / 41.3562444°N 74.0537861°W / 41.3562444; -74.0537861 (Downstate Correctional Facility) New York State Department of Correctional Services Downstate Correctional Facility [64]
41°21′22.48″N 74°03′13.63″W / 41.3562444°N 74.0537861°W / 41.3562444; -74.0537861 (Beacon/Fishkill Correctional Facility) New York State Department of Correctional Services Beacon Correctional Facility/Fishkill Correctional Facility [65]
41°45′08.33″N 70°32′16.49″W / 41.7523139°N 70.5379139°W / 41.7523139; -70.5379139 (Cape Cod Radar) Cape Cod Air Force Station - PAVE PAWS radar, Massachusetts No longer censored [66]
41°56′39.53″N 70°34′40.09″W / 41.9443139°N 70.5778028°W / 41.9443139; -70.5778028 (Pilgrim Nuclear Station) Pilgrim Nuclear Generating Station, Plymouth, Massachusetts Pixelated [67]
42°06′53.032″N 76°49′44.638″W / 42.11473111°N 76.82906611°W / 42.11473111; -76.82906611 (Elmira Correctional Facility) Elmira Correctional Facility (maximum security prison), Elmira, New York [68]
42°23′09.97″N 71°02′37.60″W / 42.3861028°N 71.043778°W / 42.3861028; -71.043778 (Liquid Natural Gas Terminal) Liquid Natural Gas Terminal, Chelsea, Massachusetts Pixelated [69]
42°23′24.69″N 71°03′34.84″W / 42.3901917°N 71.0596778°W / 42.3901917; -71.0596778 (Industrial port area) Chelsea, Massachusetts - Large portion of an industrial port area in Boston. Pixelated [70]
42°27′34.56″N 71°16′01.63″W / 42.4596°N 71.2671194°W / 42.4596; -71.2671194 (MIT Lincoln Laboratory) Lincoln Laboratory at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology Pixelated [71]
42°27′47.18″N 71°16′58.87″W / 42.4631056°N 71.2830194°W / 42.4631056; -71.2830194 (Hanscom Air Force Base) Hanscom Field and Hanscom Air Force Base, Massachusetts Pixelated [72]
42°31′35.71″N 70°52′35.86″W / 42.5265861°N 70.8766278°W / 42.5265861; -70.8766278 (Salem Harbor Power Station) Salem Harbor Power Station Pixelated [73]
42°49′29.24″N 73°52′11.88″W / 42.8247889°N 73.8699667°W / 42.8247889; -73.8699667 (Knolls Atomic Power Laboratory) Knolls Atomic Power Laboratory and General Electric World Research Laboratories, Schenectady, New York Available in high resolution at Bing Maps; dam on Mohawk River slightly downstream also blurred in Google Maps. [74]
42°53′54.07″N 70°51′08.14″W / 42.8983528°N 70.8522611°W / 42.8983528; -70.8522611 (Seabrook Nuclear Power Station) Seabrook Nuclear Power Station - Seabrook, New Hampshire [75]
43°06′49.45″N 76°06′41.05″W / 43.1137361°N 76.1114028°W / 43.1137361; -76.1114028 (Syracuse Hancock International Airport) Syracuse Hancock International Airport - Syracuse, New York [76]
34°47′38.52″N 82°53′44.69″W / 34.7940333°N 82.8957472°W / 34.7940333; -82.8957472 (Oconee Nuclear Station) Oconee Nuclear Station, Oconee County, South Carolina [77]
University of Massachusetts Lowell Nuclear Research Reactor [78]
43°08′32″N 79°02′21″W / 43.14222°N 79.03917°W / 43.14222; -79.03917 (Niagara Falls dams) Hydroelectric dams and supporting waterways near Niagara Falls, New York and Niagara Falls, Ontario [79]
Central eastern village of Yona on the Pacific Island U.S. territory of Guam [80]
MasterCard Corporate Offices/Manhattanville College, Dammann and Tenney Dormitories - Purchase, New York [81]
35°35′53.2″N 80°58′1.08″W / 35.598111°N 80.9669667°W / 35.598111; -80.9669667 (Marshall Steam Station) Marshall Steam Station, Terrell, North Carolina Visible on, probably mistakenly blurred for nearby McGuire Nuclear Generating Station [82]
Greater Rochester International Airport - Rochester, New York [83]
General Electric Main Plant - Schenectady, New York [84]
40°55′37.08″N 73°51′14.38″W / 40.9269667°N 73.8539944°W / 40.9269667; -73.8539944 (Cross County Mall) Cross County Mall - Yonkers, New York Visible on, Bing Maps, and The mall, neighborhood and streets have been watercolored in Google Maps. [85]
Pennsylvania State University and surrounding area, State College, Pennsylvania Home to one of the U.S. Navy's top civilian research facilities[16] [86]
42°9′36″N 76°53′30″W / 42.16°N 76.89167°W / 42.16; -76.89167 (Elmira-Corning Regional Airport) Elmira-Corning Regional Airport, Big Flats, New York Facility blurred in Google, but not Bing Maps [87]
40°54′43.24″N 73°46′48.41″W / 40.9120111°N 73.7801139°W / 40.9120111; -73.7801139 (Downtown New Rochelle, NY) Downtown New Rochelle, New York [88]
42°26′32.69″N 76°28′26.04″W / 42.4424139°N 76.4739°W / 42.4424139; -76.4739 (Cornell University, Ithaca, NY) A section of Cornell University in Ithaca, New York Facility blurred in Google, but Bing Maps [89]
41°05′45.00″N 73°57′31.00″W / 41.09583°N 73.95861°W / 41.09583; -73.95861 (Palisades Center Mall, Nanuet, NY) Palisades Center in Nanuet, New York. [90]
40°57′57″N 73°40′26″W / 40.96583°N 73.67389°W / 40.96583; -73.67389 (Playland Park, Rye, NY) Playland Park in Rye, New York Facility blurred in Google, but not Bing Maps [91]
41°30′16″N 71°24′01″W / 41.50444°N 71.40028°W / 41.50444; -71.40028 (Dutch Island, Jamestown, RI) Dutch Island Jamestown in Narragansett Bay, Rhode Island Island completely missing in Google [92]
42°51′46.71″N 78°49′48.83″W / 42.862975°N 78.8302306°W / 42.862975; -78.8302306 (Buffalo, NY) Industrial area blurred near Buffalo River in Buffalo, New York Blurred on Google maps [93]
42°43′06″N 73°42′31″W / 42.71833°N 73.70861°W / 42.71833; -73.70861 (Watervliet Arsernal) Watervliet Arsenal/Benet Laboratories in Watervliet, New York [94]
33°30′49.91″N 115°40′33.05″W / 33.5138639°N 115.6758472°W / 33.5138639; -115.6758472 (Chocolate Mountain Aerial Gunnery Range) Chocolate Mountain Aerial Gunnery Range east of the Salton Sea in Riverside County, California Details of the terrain on a hill have been blacked out. Also removed from Bing Maps [95]


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