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SOCIAL NETWORK Facebook likely will face the data protection authority in Ireland over the European data that it shares with the US National Security Agency (NSA).
Student group Europe v Facebook (EvF) is in the early stages of a battle to force an investigation of Facebook and has claimed an early round victory.
"[EvF] won a first stage victory against the Irish Data Protection Commissioner (DPC). The Irish High Court will review the inaction of the authority in relation to the PRISM scandal. An application for Judicial Review was granted by the High Court," it said in a statement.
"The Irish Data Protection Commissioner [DPC] Billy Hawkes had previously claimed that there is 'nothing to investigate' when it comes to Facebook's role in the PRISM scandal."
According to the group Facebook is illegally transporting European citizens' data to the US, and has nothing standing in its way except a disinterested Data Protection Commission.
"The DPC simply wanted to get this hot potato off his table instead of doing his job," said spokesman Max Schrems. "But when it comes to the fundamental rights of millions of users and the biggest surveillance scandal in years, he will have to take responsibility and do something about it."
The student group has raised similar allegations against Microsoft and Skype in Luxembourg and Germany, and Schrems said that these are being investigated.
"We are excited to see what happens in Luxembourg and Germany. So far we only know that the complaints are [being] investigated," he added.
"We certainly hope that there are serious consequences if the data of millions of Europeans is misused. We have to take action - and this will need to be more than a couple of angry letters by our politicians."
In Ireland it is up to the DPC to react now. Europe v Facebook is confident of obtaining a ruling in the coming year. µ
Tags: Social Media
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