Facebook’s Meta cannot run ads based on personal data without users’ consent, EU privacy watchdog rules
In a new blow to Facebook’s parent company Meta Platforms, the EU privacy watchdog ruled that Meta cannot run advertising based on personal data and will need users’ consent to do so, according to a report from Reuters, citing a person familiar with the matter. It’s another bad news for the social giant which already lost over 70 percent of its market value due to a bad bet on the metaverse.
Per the report, the EU privacy watchdog the European Data Protection Board has given a month to the Irish privacy regulator, which has the sole authority, to issue its final decision. The sources told Reuters that the Irish privacy regulator’s decision is likely to include hefty fines.
The news comes a year after Apple rolled out the privacy feature that prevents Facebook from tracking you without your consent. A large chunk of Meta’s revenue comes from advertising. Last year, Meta said that automatically opting users out of its app tracking could cost the company 3% of its annual ad revenue.
This is not the first time Meta got into trouble with privacy regulators around the world. In August, Mata agreed to pay $37.5 million for violating users’ privacy and tracking their movements through smartphones without their permission. As part of the settlement reached in San Francisco federal court, Meta agreed to pay $37.5 million to settle the lawsuit that began about four years ago. However, Meta denied wrongdoing in agreeing to settle the case.
In April last year, Meta revealed 500,000 fewer daily log-ins and declining profits. Zuckerberg said Facebook users’ decline was partly due to the boom in popularity of the competitor platform TikTok. That’s not all. Meta also blamed the woes on a combination of other factors, including privacy changes to Apple’s iOS and economic challenges, for Wednesday’s decline in stock prices.
Meanwhile, App said that its new App Tracking Transparency “requires all apps to get the user’s permission before tracking their data across apps or websites owned by other companies for advertising, or sharing their data with data brokers.” Apple said that apps can prompt users for permission, and in Settings, users will be able to see which apps have requested permission to track so they can make changes to their choice at any time.