German authorities warn Facebook over privacy concerns

German authorities have issued an official warning to Facebook, with regards to its privacy policy - stating that in its current form, it is in breach of local data protection laws.

Publicly displayed in recent months, during SOPA and PIPA protests by German citizens and those of ex Soviet Union countries, people in that part of the world are incredibly protective of privacy and their personal freedoms. This is echoed in the German authorities several scuffles with Facebook, over its privacy policy in the past few years.

In this instance, the call for change came from German consumer group Verbraucherzentrale Bundesverband (VZBV), which had a problem with the social network's friend finder. Taking Facebook to court, it won, prompting German lawmakers to caution the site. This is in addition to suggesting that users should be able to see how the friend finder works, and how much information from a user's digital address book it uses, to connect members of the site and those that have yet to join.

"The verdict is a milestone. Facebook and Co. have to respect the privacy protection in Europe," said VZBV chief executive Gerd Billen. He also said that his group would keep an eye on Facebook's actions after the ruling.

A spokesperson for the site said that it was committed to adhering to European data laws and that it was considering its position, before responding accordingly.

Source: The Inquirer