Facebook, Google take France to court over data

More than twenty Internet-based companies have decided to take France to court due to the country's decree to make companies keep user's connection data for up to one year. The decree allows police, social security, and other government offices to subpena the information at any time.

The French Association of Internet Community Services (ASIC) will be representing Google, Facebook, eBay, and Dailymotion, among others, during the appeal at the State Council, France's highest judicial district, on Wednesday morning.

The decree forces Internet websites ranging from e-commerce to video-music websites to keep a year's worth of associated email addresses, full names, postal addresses, telephone numbers, passwords, pseudonyms, and other data used to check or modify them.

Benoit Tabaka, who is head of the ASIC, told the media that "several elements are problematic. For instance, there was no consultation with the European Commission." Tabaka also told reporters that he was shocked that France was forcing an obligation to "keep passwords and hand them over to police services."