Google and Facebook are already abusing GDPR, new report claims

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Image by Shutterstock

The lawsuit alleges this "forced consent" amounts to a violation of GDPR, which guarantees individuals the right to consent when companies want to collect and process their personal data.

A major focus of GDPR is that companies will not be able to use vague or confusing statements to get you to agree to give them data, which means it could have a far-reaching impact on some of the biggest technology firms in the world including Facebook and Google. That minefield means it's far more practical to apply the same protections worldwide.

Hastings Borough Council's culture team sent out correspondence about the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR), which comes in on Friday.

So, if it's all so complicated, why did Europe bother to introduce the rules?

Lots of companies are beginning to allow you to download personal copies of the data they've collected on you or that you've stored.

- One worker was told that if your business provides a guest wifi, all connections must be recorded - as well as what the guests are viewing on the internet.

The Data Protection Act 2018 will force companies to use people's personal data responsibly or risk millions of pounds in fines. Since the guidelines have to be met today, that's why you've been getting flooded with emails explaining updates that comply with GDPR. Companies are also required to maintain documentation of your obtained consent.

The updated policies are easy to understand so just give them a once over so that you are fully aware of what data SamMobile collects, what we do with it and how we protect it. SamMobile does not disclose your personal data to third parties. Firms have to clarify how long they retain data.

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Any companies that suffer a data breach must now notify authorities within 72 hours of first becoming aware of it-and notify consumers "without undue delay". Ms Denham said companies have had two years to prepare. The most egregious offenders could face fines up to 20 million euros, or 4% of their annual revenue-whichever is higher. That's an incentive for companies to take these rules seriously.

Other Europeans took things in their stride, responding to the abrupt blackout, preceded by an avalanche of emails urging Europeans to agree to the new privacy rules, with cartoons and memes.

The rules also ease things for global businesses in the European Union, because data regulations are now uniform across the economic zone.

Depending on how big a company's presence is in the European region, they will have to tweak their data and privacy policies.

Some companies are extending at least some EU-style protections to all users.

Critics, though, say the new rules are overly burdensome, especially for small businesses, while advertisers and publishers worry it will make it harder for them to find customers.

Mark Zuckerberg was recently in Brussels and pledged that Facebook would be fully compliant with European Union law.

- A solicitor said she had received numerous calls from people asking if they would be in breach of the law by passing her details to a colleague/friend/business associate looking for personal data advice.

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