EXCLUSIVE / Digital services that collect users’ data, like Facebook and Gmail, will be pulled under EU consumer protection rules as part of a European Commission overhaul due next month. Possible sanctions will be raised to up to 4% of a company's turnover.
After half a year of intense debate and bickering between member states, the European Commission proposed on Wednesday (21 March) a new system for taxing digital companies that will charge large firms 3% of their revenue and will hit US tech giants like Google and Facebook.
Privacy regulators from across the EU should join together to investigate allegations that London-based firm Cambridge Analytica illegally analysed millions of Facebook users’ data, the EU’s top data protection watchdog has said.
The European Parliament announced on Monday (19 March) that it will investigate allegations that millions of Facebook users’ data was misused without their knowledge. The European Commission also called for national watchdogs to open their own probes of the incident.
The OECD warned on Friday (16 March) against the European Commission’s plan to propose a new tax next week targeting digital companies, arguing that it may cause economic distortion and raise business costs.
An expert group advising the European Commission on so-called fake news wants tech giants to be more transparent about their advertising revenue. Their new report pressures social media firms like Facebook and Twitter to deal with the spread of false information on their platforms.
Facebook Inc has told a British parliamentary committee that further investigations have found no new evidence that Russia used social media to interfere in the June 2016 referendum in which Britain voted to leave the European Union.
A German consumer rights group said on Monday (12 February) that a court had found Facebook's use of personal data to be illegal because the US social media platform did not adequately secure the informed consent of its users.
EU regulators have forced tech giants to comply with the bloc's strict data protection rules. But when Isabelle Falque-Pierrotin took over as top EU privacy watchdog in 2014, she said the mostly American companies were ignorant about Europe’s strict standards and thought "the world is uniform".
Europe’s powerful data protection regulators are banding together to coordinate how they investigate and sanction misbehaving companies before a major overhaul of the bloc’s privacy law takes effect in May.
Consumer advocates have urged the European Commission to propose legislation allowing for collective EU lawsuits after the bloc’s top court rejected a class action against Facebook on Thursday (25 January).
Facebook Inc said on Wednesday (17 January) it would conduct a new, comprehensive search of its records for possible propaganda that Russian operatives may have spread during the run-up to Britain's 2016 referendum on EU membership.
Researchers and officials working on internet governance have urged EU institutions to help expand the use of internationalised domain names, which contain letters from alphabets including Cyrillic or Greek, or accented letters like in the word “café”.