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Category Archives: EU Data Protection

Antitrust: Commission sends Statement of Objections to Google on comparison shopping service

“The European Commission has sent a Statement of Objections to Google outlining the Commission’s preliminary view that the company is abusing a dominant position, in breach of EU antitrust rules, by systematically favouring its own comparison shopping product in its general search results pages in the European Economic Area (EEA). The Commission is concerned that users do not necessarily see the most relevant results in response to queries – to the detriment of consumers and rival comparison shopping services, as well as stifling innovation. Google has a dominant position in providing general online search services throughout the EEA, with market shares above 90% in most EEA countries. Since 2002, Google has also been active in providing comparison shopping services, which allow consumers to search for products on online shopping websites and compare prices between different vendors. The first product it offered, “Froogle”, was replaced by “Google Product Search”, which in turn was replaced by its current product “Google Shopping”. The Statement of Objections outlines that the markets for general search and comparison shopping are two separate markets. In the latter market, Google faces competition from a number of alternative providers.”

A critical analysis of Facebook’s Revised Policies and Terms

From social media service to advertising network – A critical analysis of Facebook’s Revised Policies and Terms DRAFT 31 March 2015. The authors are part of the Interdisciplinary Centre for Law and ICT/Centre for Intellectual Property Rights(ICRI/CIR) of KU Leuven (www.icri.be), the department of Studies on Media, Information and Telecommunication (SMIT) of the Vrije UniversiteitContinue Reading

Facebook tracks all users in breach of EU law

theguardian, Samuel Gibbs: “Facebook tracks the web browsing of everyone who visits a page on its site even if the user does not have an account or has explicitly opted out of tracking in the EU, extensive research commissioned by the Belgian data protection agency has revealed. The report, from researchers at the Centre ofContinue Reading

European Court of Justice Hears Case Challenging “Safe Harbor” Agreement and NSA Spying

EPIC – “The Court of Justice for the European Union heard arguments this week in Maximilian Schrems v. Data Protection Commissioner, a case filed in Ireland following the revelations of the NSA PRISM program. At issue is whether the disclosure of EU citizens’ data by Facebook and other Internet companies to the NSA violates theContinue Reading

CRI/CIR advises Belgian Privacy Commission in Facebook investigation

“In December 2014, Facebook announced that it would revise its Data Use Policy and Terms of Service. At the request of the Belgian Privacy Commission, ICRI/CIR (KU Leuven), in cooperation with iMinds-SMIT (Vrije Universiteit Brussel) conducted an extensive analysis of Facebook’s revised policies and terms. Facebook rolled out its new policies and terms on JanuaryContinue Reading

UK Interception of Communications Code of Practice

Via The Register: “The UK government slipped out consultation documents on “equipment interference” and “interception of communications” (read: computer hacking by police and g-men) on Friday. They were made public on the same day that the Investigatory Powers Tribunal ruled that the spying revelations exposed by master blabbermouth Edward Snowden had accidentally made British spooks’Continue Reading

UK Tribunal Rules Secret Surveillance Unlawful

The Intercept: “The United Kingdom’s top surveillance agency has acted unlawfully by keeping details about the scope of its Internet spying operations secret, a British court ruled in an unprecedented judgment issued on Friday. Government Communications Headquarters, or GCHQ, was found to have breached human rights laws by concealing information about how it accesses surveillanceContinue Reading

Council of Europe Report on Mass Surveillance

Provisional version – Committee on Legal Affairs and Human Rights – Mass surveillance. Rapporteur: Mr Pieter Omtzigt, Netherlands, Group of the European People’s Party. “Our freedom is built on what others do not know of our existences” Alexandr Solzhenitsyn. A Draft resolution 1. The Parliamentary Assembly is deeply concerned about mass surveillance practices disclosed sinceContinue Reading

Foreign Intelligence Gathering Laws

Library of Congress – “This report contains information on laws regulating the collection of intelligence in the European Union, United Kingdom, France, Netherlands, Portugal, Romania, and Sweden. The report details how EU Members States control activities of their intelligence agencies and what restrictions are imposed on information collection.  All EU Member States follow EU legislationContinue Reading

Law Enforcement Without Borders

CDT – “A critical case is now working its way through the US courts—one that raises important questions for users and providers of cloud services in both the US and Europe. As part of a US criminal investigation, a US federal court has ordered Microsoft to hand over a customer’s files that the company holdsContinue Reading

Oxfam’s new report on global inequalty

“From Ghana to Germany, South Africa to Spain, the gap between rich and poor is rapidly increasing, and economic inequality has reached extreme levels. In South Africa, inequality is greater today than at the end of Apartheid.The consequences are corrosive for everyone. Extreme inequality corrupts politics, hinders economic growth and stifles social mobility. It fuels crimeContinue Reading

Berlin Weighs Possible Hit to U.S. Tech Firms

WSJ – “German politicians are debating a new Internet-security law that could exclude U.S. technology companies from Germany’s digital economy, a sign Berlin is beginning to press its commercial advantage after revelations of spying by the NSA. The draft law, which is still being hammered out, envisions new requirements like revealing source code or other proprietaryContinue Reading