Irish Privacy Regulator Ordered to Investigate Facebook Data

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DUBLIN:  Ireland’s privacy regulator was ordered to investigate Facebook Inc’s transfers of European data to the United States today following a legal challenge mounted by an Austrian law student against its initial refusal to do so.

Max Schrems challenged the transfers of European users‘ data after revelations in 2013 of the US government Prism programme, which allowed US authorities to harvest private information directly. He filed his complaint in Ireland because Facebook has its European headquarters in Dublin.

After a landmark ruling by the European Court of Justice (ECJ) declared invalid a system used by thousands of US and European companies to transfer personal data to the United State, Judge Gerard Hogan told the Irish Data Protection Commissioner (DPC) it was obliged to investigate the complaint.

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