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Facebook cleans up data use T&Cs in Europe

Tyrone Stewart

Facebook app iconFacebook has agreed to make changes to its terms and conditions following pressure from lawmakers within the European Union over a lack of clarity in the policies.

Following discussions between Facebook, the European Commission, and consumer authorities, the new terms make it clearer that keeping Facebook free requires the social network selling user data to third parties for advertising purposes. It terms will also provide information on how users can close their accounts and under what reasons accounts can be disabled.

"Today Facebook finally shows commitment to more transparency and straight forward language in its terms of use. A company that wants to restore consumers trust after the Facebook/ Cambridge Analytica scandal should not hide behind complicated, legalistic jargon on how it is making billions on people's data,” said Vera Jourová, commissioner for justice, consumers and gender equality. “Now, users will clearly understand that their data is used by the social network to sell targeted ads. By joining forces, the consumer authorities and the European Commission, stand up for the rights of EU consumers.”

Facebook has also made amendments to its policy on the limitation of liability, now acknowledging its responsibility in the case of negligence; has limited the cases where it can unilaterally makes changes to terms; set the limit to 90 days for holding on to deleted content; and clarified the language around a user’s right to appeal the removal of content.

Although the exact wording of the updated terms has not yet been disclosed, the social network has until the end of June to implement the changes. Failure of Facebook to implement the changes in time could result in sanctions.

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