German Consumer Group Gives Facebook Privacy Ultimatum

The Federation of German Consumer Organizations, a German consumer lobbying group, said on Monday that Facebook is giving away users’ information in its new App Center centre without first notifying them. The Federation gave Facebook a one-week ultimatum, until September 4, to comply with Germany’s rigid privacy laws and stop giving away users information to third-party apps or face legal action.

The Germans, having had a few run-ins with security and privacy issues in their past, have some of the strictest privacy laws in Europe, especially when it comes to data and information. However, they are by no means the first country to take a stand against Facebook. Norway and Ireland are also currently investigating the site to see if it violates any laws in their respective countries.

In the wake of the site’s historic public trading, the pressure has been building on Facebook to face up to its own privacy issues and become the responsible company it’s supposed to be. However, the site is all too often slow to respond to complaints and accusations, leading to damaging story after damaging story. Of course, being investigated by several foreign governments at once is never a good thing, either.

What do you think about the European pushback to Facebook? What do you think took them so long to react to Facebook in this way, and should they be so concerned about how their privacy laws impact Facebook?

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