Meta fined for forcing users to agree to personalised adverts | Science & Tech News

Meta has been fined €390m (£343m) by regulators for forcing users to agree to personalized advertising.

The fine was handed down by Ireland’s Data Protection Commission, which says the social media company breached EU privacy laws.

Along with heavy fines, Meta Forcing users to sign up to such advertisements is also prohibited.

Promotions are based on one’s online activity, allowing advertisers to target people who are likely to be interested in their products and services.

Meta, formerly known as Facebookhas said it will appeal against the fine and the substance of the verdict.

It added that the order will not prevent targeted or personalized advertising on its platforms, including Instagram, WhatsAppand Facebook.

“The decisions relate only to what legal basis Meta uses when serving certain ads,” a spokesperson said.

The fine is €225m (then £193m). Irish watchdog hands over WhatsApp in 2021when the company was found to have broken regulations regarding transparency of data shared with other meta firms.

Ireland’s Data Commissioner issues such fines within the European Union in its role as the privacy regulator for many of the world’s largest technology companies.

The latest fine brings the total levied against Meta by the watchdog to €1.3bn (£1.1bn).

According to Reuters, the fine follows the European Union’s directive last month on how social media firms run ads.

This is related to changes in Facebook and Instagram’s terms of service following the introduction of the EU privacy regulation in 2018, where Meta tried to rely on the legal basis of so-called “agreement” to handle advertising.

It previously relied on users’ express consent to process their personal data for targeted advertising, and Metta implicitly deemed acceptance of its 2018 updated terms to retain such advertising.

A company spokesperson argued that “there is a lack of regulatory clarity on this matter”.

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Facebook and Instagram have been fined just weeks after being scrutinized by Meta over the presence of potentially fraudulent ads.

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