Facebook commences privacy push ahead of European data protection law

Facebook has announced that it would be introducing a new privacy centre this year which will feature all the major privacy settings in one location. This is to roll out right before the introduction of a new strict European Union data protection law which will take effect on the 25th of May 2018. The EU General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) has been formed to check the rate at which tech companies collect store and use personal data. Facebook on this note has also said that it would be publishing its privacy ethics for the first time to give people facts on the way the company handles the information of its users.

Facebook’s Chief Operating Officer, Sheryl Sandberg, in a speech last week stated that the innovative privacy centre would provide Facebook with a “very good foundation to meet all the requirements of the GDPR and to spur us on to continue investing in products and in educational tools to protect privacy.”

The GDPR will put into effect certain rules across the 28-member nations of the European Union, and it will include a rule requiring companies to give a report of any breaches in data within 3 days. Companies also must without restrictions permit users to either export their data or to delete it. Included in prevailing “right to be forgotten” requirements, people who do not want particular data about them to be online can request that such data be removed by the companies. If companies do not follow the rules of the GDPR, they would be fined up to 4% of their universal yearly revenue or €20 million (i.e $24.8 million).

The new privacy centre tool is likely to be more detailed and it will unite key privacy settings instead of distributing them through multiple pages. Facebook is at the moment supporting a limited feature called Privacy Check-Up which provides you with controls over prospective posts, your profile’s About Me section, and app preferences.

As part of the drive for privacy, Facebook has also begun running education videos in the News Feed of users in a bid to teach them how to delete old posts, explain to them what happens to their data when they delete their accounts, and show them how they can manage data for Facebook ads. There also will be videos on various privacy topics all through the year according to Facebook.

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