French consumer rights watchdog sues Google, Facebook, Twitter for privacy violations
UFC-Que Choisir – a group which advises consumers on products, services and their rights – said it was filing a suit in the High Court over “abusive” and “illegal” practices in the conditions of use on the three social networks, AFP reported Tuesday.
The watchdog claimed that the social networks “persist in authorizing the widespread collection, modification, preservation and use of the data of users and even of those around them.”
“Faced with such abuses” UFC-Que Choisir appealed to French judges, asking them to “order the suppression or modification of the myriad of contentious clauses imposed by these companies.”
Earlier this year, French data protection watchdog CNIL fined Google 150,000 euros ($204,000) for ignoring its three-month deadline to align its practice of tracking and storing user information with the country’s law. CNIL said the US-owned Internet giant did not sufficiently inform its users about the conditions under which their personal data was processed and the purposes of the processing.
The moves reflected growing concerns among Europeans over the possibility of their privacy rights violations after Google unilaterally introduced in March 2012 new terms of service on users of all its cloud services, including YouTube, Gmail and the Google search engine.