Germany’s Federal Cartel Office orders Facebook to stop collecting user data from multiple sources

Germany’s Federal Cartel Office, known as the Bundeskartellamt has imposed on Facebook an order with far-reaching restrictions in the processing of user data.

The announcement was made on Thursday 7th February 2019, and follows a three-year long probe that began with intensive scrutiny of Facebook over a series of privacy protection failures, including the leaking of data on tens of millions of Facebook users, and the extensive use of targeted ads purchased by state actors of countries seeking to influence US elections.

The cartel office objected to how Facebook acquires data on people from third-party apps – including its own WhatsApp and Instagram services – and its online tracking (using Facebook analytics) of people who aren’t even members of the platform.

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