Facebook loses Belgian privacy case, faces fine up to $125m

Facebook had to delete all data it had gathered illegally on Belgian citizens


Reuters February 16, 2018
Facebook logo on display in this illustration taken in Sarajevo, Bosnia and Herzegovina, in this December 16, 2015. PHOTO: REUTERS

BRUSSELS: A Belgian court threatenedFacebook with a fine of up to 100 million euros  if it continued to break privacy laws by tracking people on third party websites.

In a case brought by Belgium's privacy watchdog, the court also ruled on Friday that Facebook had to delete all data it had gathered illegally on Belgian citizens, including people who were not Facebook users themselves.

Facebook, which will be fined 250,000 euros a day or up to 100 million euros if it does not comply with the court's judgement, said in a statement it would appeal the ruling.

EU tells Facebook, Google and Twitter to 'do more' for users

"Facebook informs us insufficiently about gathering information about us, the kind of data it collects, what it does with that data and how long it stores it," the court said.

"It also does not gain our consent to collect and store all this information," it added in a statement.

The social media group uses different methods to track the online behaviour of people if they are not on the company's web site by placing cookies and invisible pixels on third party websites, the court said.

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