French authorities warn Facebook on data collection

French data protection and competition authorities have called on Facebook to change the way it collects and regulates data of both users and non-users.

Privacy agency CNIL and competition agency DGCCRF separately said this week that current Facebook conditions do not comply with French law. CNIL gave the social media giant three months to comply with what it said were privacy violations or face possible fines.

Non-users who visit a public Facebook page can have data on their browsing history collected without prior notification, CNIL said. Additionally, Facebook collects information on the sexual orientation, religious and political views of its users without explicit consent.

The social media site uses the data for advertising purposes, CNIL added, and transfers it to the US using an agreement that was struck down by the European Court of Justice in 2015.

Many US-based technology companies have been affected by the court's decision to invalidate the agreement, called Safe Harbor, but Facebook said it wasn't affected by the decision because it didn't make use of the agreement.

"The protection of privacy is a priority for Facebook. We are confident that our service is in conformity with European data protection laws," a Facebook spokesman said Tuesday in a statement.

France's competition authority DGCCRF gave the networking site 60 days to comply with what it identified as violations of law, including Facebook's discretionary power to remove information published by users on the network and its ability to change the conditions of use without informing users beforehand.

Last update: Fri, 24/06/2016 - 08:49
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