Italy: Facebook fined €10mn
Italy: Facebook fined €10mn

It is reported that Italian Anti-trust Authority (AGCM) has levied two fines on Facebook adding up to €10 mn (US$11.4 mn) for alleged breaches of Consumer Code. Facebook’s default setting of its services prepares transmission of user data to individual websites/apps without express consent from users.

The fines are some of the largest levied against social media company for data misuse, dwarfing £500,000 (US$660,000) fine levied by British Information Commissioner’s Office in September—maximum that body was able to issue.

The Regulator found Facebook in breach of the Code by:

  • Misleading users in sign-up process about extent to which data they provide would be used for commercial purposes.
  • Emphasizing only free nature of service, without informing users of profitable ends that underlie provision of the social network, and so encouraging them to make a decision of a commercial nature that they would not have taken if they were in full possession of facts.
  • Forcing an aggressive practice on registered users by transmitting their data from Facebook to third parties, and vice versa, for commercial purposes.