Though times seem to be around for tech giants, as Facebook joins the queue of the companies facing legal action in the European courts. Thanks to the row amid Facebook and Belgium’s Commission for Protection of Privacy, a few months down the road, Facebook is set to face legal action in Belgium.
According to Belgium’s privacy watchdogs, Facebook ought to be presented before the authorities as it keeps tabs on the behavior of people, which under both the Belgian and the European law is deemed illegal.
Speaking in an interview to a Belgian newspaper named De Morgen, William Debeuckelaere, President of the commission said: “Facebook’s behavior is unacceptable. Even people, who explicitly state that they do not want to be tracked, are tracked anyway. They answered that they do not accept Belgian law or the authority of the Belgian privacy commission and that it is all a misunderstanding”
The commission claims that it has already filed informal warnings to Facebook a number of times and it seems that the time has arrived to take legal action, as the company just doesn’t seem to observe the privacy legislation set by the regulators.
Facebook officials now have to report to the courts in Brussels this Thursday, and could find themselves in deep water as a number of regulators from other countries, including France, Spain, and Germany have also spoken of their plans to take legal action, or perhaps, join hands with the Belgian authorities.
On the contrary, Facebook looks rather confident regarding the issue, being of the idea that it is very little for the company to worry about and that the case would be taken care of. A spokesperson from Facebook said: “We were surprised and disappointed that, after the CBPL had already agreed to meet with us on the 19th June to discuss their recommendations, they took the theatrical action of bringing Facebook Belgium to court on the day beforehand.”
Additionally, there are reports that Belgian Privacy Commission is in a rather hurry to get started with the proceedings, much of which is credited to the “massive violation” of the country’s rules and regulations by Facebook.
According to Belgian authorities, Facebook takes notes of people on other websites through the like and share option available on the website and this is where they allegedly crossed the line. Additionally, Belgian authorities claim that it has been in talks with other authorities from across Europe, regularly consulting them regarding the situation. All eyes are now on the court in Brussels, where the hearing is scheduled to get underway on this Thursday, June 18.