Germany bans Facebook from combining user data

Zuckerberg's refusal to attend UK hearing forced seizure of documents, reports say
By Editor

Authorities in Germany have prohibited Facebook from combining user data from different sources.

This decision is not yet final, and Facebook has one month to appeal the decision to the Düsseldorf Higher Regional Court.

The Bundeskartellamt points out that many users are not aware that use of Facebook is subject to Facebook being able to collect an almost unlimited amount of any type of user data from third party sources, allocate those to the users’ Facebook accounts, and use them for numerous data processing processes.

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It notes that third-party websites that include embedded “Like” or “Share” buttons enable data to flow to Facebook.

The Bundeskartellamt said: “It is not even necessary, e.g. to scroll over or click on a “Like” button. Calling up a website with an embedded “Like” button will start the data flow.

Millions of such interfaces can be encountered on German websites and on apps”.

The BBC reported that the UK-based campaign group Privacy International has said that if the German ruling holds, Facebook should extend the same rights to its other users.

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