Germany Says Facebook Can’t Combine Data

Facebook_logo_(square)Germany is taking on Facebook’s data gathering practice, and trying to put an end to how the company tracks social media users.

The country’s antitrust office ruled that the social networking giant is violating consumer trust by combining data gathered from its various properties and third-party websites.

According to the German office, using data from Instagram, WhatsApp and Facebook in conjunction with third-party data allows the company to build unique consumer profiles, which breaks consent rules.

The office snow requiring Facebook to get explicit consent to collect and combine this data. The company must provide the German office with a plan to fix these practices or face hefty fines.

“We are carrying out what can be seen as an internal divestiture of Facebook’s data,” stated Andreas Mundt, the president of the antitrust office. “Facebook will no longer be allowed to force its users to agree to the practically unrestricted collection and assigning of non-Facebook data to their Facebook user accounts.”

Facebook plans to appeal the decision.

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