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17 Feb, 2021 11:00

Facebook fined €7 million in Italy after refusing to address user data concerns

Facebook fined €7 million in Italy after refusing to address user data concerns

Italy has fined Facebook €7 million ($8.5 million) after the social network company failed to address and rectify user data practices that were flagged as a concern in November 2018.

The fine was issued by the Italian Competition and Market Authority after Facebook refused to comply with a request to correct practices in its treatment of user data.

"Facebook was misleading users to register on its platform by not informing them immediately and adequately… of the collection activity, with commercial intent, of the data provided by them," the watchdog said in a statement.

In 2018, the original fine levied was just €5 million ($5.5 million). The authority ordered the social media giant to publish an amended statement on the homepage of its website for Italy, as well as on the Facebook app and the personal page of each registered Italian user. However, Facebook didn't follow the ruling and "has not stopped the established unfair practice," the regulator discovered.

Facebook did not issue a statement on the news.

The company has repeatedly found itself fined and scrutinized outside of the United States. It has been either fined or sued by various government watchdogs in Australia, France, Germany, Hungary, Spain and the United Kingdom – most of the fines related to the Facebook-Cambridge Analytica scandal, where millions of Facebook users had their personal data mined and used by data firm Cambridge Analytica for use in political campaigns.

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