Facebook hit with international class action privacy suit
by Liat Clark August 1, 2014
An Austrian privacy activist has launched a wide-reaching class action suit against Facebook Ireland for breaching European data protection law.
Anyone outside of the US and Canada can join activist and law student Max Schrems' suit via the website fbclaim.com, since they will have signed up to Facebook's terms and conditions via the Dublin-based European subsidiary. That amounts to around 82 percent of all Facebook users. After being live for just one hour, the site has collected 100 participants.
The suit is seeking damages of €500 (£400) per user, and injunctions to be levied on the company for the following breaches:
Failing to get "effective consent" for using data
Implementing a legally invalid data use policy
Tracking users online outside of Facebook via "Like" buttons
Using big data to monitor users
Failing to make Graph Search opt-in
The unauthorised passing of user data to external apps
Its involvement in NSA's Prism programme, designed to extract personal data from the public's internet use. (Schrems is pursuing a separate case on this due to be heard by the European Court of Justice.)