Mark Zuckerberg is trying to smooth over things with the European Union after the Cambridge Analytica scandal, and others, exposed the privacy issues plaguing Facebook. But, according to the Daily Dot, the company is now facing a lawsuit from a European organization for tricking its users into signing new terms of service.
The lawsuit, filed by non-profit digital rights organization NOYB (also known as the European Center for Digital Rights), claims that red “pending” notifications appear on users' profiles to show them new terms of service. The notifications remain until users agree to the new terms of service, which hand Facebook their personal data, and appear even if there are no new notifications.
NOYB believes Facebook is violating the E.U.’s General Data Protection Regulation, a set of rules aimed at giving users control over their data, by not complying with the rule that personal data must be “processed lawfully, fairly and in a transparent manner in relation to the data subject (‘lawfulness, fairness and transparency’).”
Privacy activist Max Schrems, who leads NOYB, also claims Facebook’s method of getting users to click checkboxes to agree to sharing their data violates GDPR’s rule of itemized consent. “They totally know that it’s going to be a violation. They don’t even try to hide it,” he told the Financial Times.
If found guilty of violating the GDPR, Facebook could face up to $1.63 billion in fines. Lawsuits were also filed against Instagram and WhatsApp, adding up to a total of more than $4.5 billion against Facebook.