German Data Protection Commissioner Orders Removal Of Facebook “Like” Button From Institutional Websites. Fines For Violators.

  • August 19, 2011 1:21 pm

German state institutions within Schleswig Holstein’s have until the end of September to remove Facebook Like (German: Gefällt mir) buttons under a new privacy push by Thilo Weichert, the head of the Independent Centre for Privacy Protection. According to Weichert, the data that is transmitted across the ocean to Facebook’s U.S. based servers includes far too much information about the user and violates numerous European and German privacy laws.

“A broad individual and for members even a personalised profile. Such a profiling infringes German and European data protection law. There is no sufficient information of users and there is no choice; the wording in the conditions of use and privacy statements of Facebook does not nearly meet the legal requirements relevant for compliance of legal notice, privacy consent and general terms of use.”

Weichert is urging German citizens to “avoid clicking on social buttons” and to “avoid setting up Facebook accounts” as well as threatening state institutions who don’t remove the offending “Like” buttons from their websites by the end of September with several different penalties ranging up to a 50,000 Euro fine.

Facebook has already responded to Weichert’s claims, stating that they are well within Germany’s (and Europe’s overall) laws regarding consumer privacy.

Gadgetsteria’s take: Weichert is overstepping his boundaries. If an individual consumer doesn’t agree to Facebook storing the data they receive, they don’t have to click on the button. No one’s holding a gun to anyone’s head…


Image Source: Computerbild.de
Source: Datenschutzzentrum.de
Via: AP, SiliconFilter

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