German anti-trust watchdog announces crackdown on Facebook’s data collection practices

Germany’s antitrust watchdog on Thursday announced a crackdown on Facebook’s data gathering after ruling the world’s largest social network abused its market dominance to gather information about users without their knowledge or consent. “In future, Facebook will no longer be allowed to force its users to agree to the practically unrestricted collection and assigning of non-Facebook data to their Facebook accounts,” the chief of the Federal Cartel Office, Andreas Mundt, said. Facebook will appeal the landmark ruling, which is the culmination of a three-year probe. The social network said that the watchdog underestimated the competition it faced and undermined Europe-wide privacy rules that took effect last year, Reuters reports.