Facebook begins GDPR privacy rollout - Mobile World Live

Facebook begins GDPR privacy rollout

18 APR 2018

European users will be the first to gain access to new privacy controls from Facebook, as the social media company begins to rollout the settings to all of its 2 billion users worldwide.

The controls (pictured, left), which Facebook is launching in compliance with the EU’s General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR), will ask users to review and consent to new privacy settings which determine what information from their profile is shared and what data can be used for advert targeting.

However, Reuters noted Facebook will not give users the choice to opt-out of targeted ads entirely: the permission screens presented to users will only offer options to “accept and continue” or “manage data setting[s]”.

Most users will likely encounter the new permission screens on their mobile device: data from Statista shows 95 per cent of Facebook users access the site from their smartphone, while 32 per cent said they also access it via a laptop or desktop.

Facebook will also give users in the EU and Canada the choice to reactivate facial recognition technology which can detect when a user is present in a photo or video posted to the site. The feature was disabled for those users following a 2011 court ruling  it violated privacy laws related to user consent.

New tools announced by Facebook last month simplifying user access to data and privacy controls will also go live this week, the company added.

The rollout comes before GDPR regulations kick in on 25 May. Facebook had previously been on the fence about extending the GDPR controls to all users, but decided to do so in the wake of the Cambridge Analytica data scandal.

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Diana Goovaerts

Diana joins Mobile World Live as its new US Editor, reporting on infrastructure and spectrum rollouts, regulatory issues, and other carrier news from the US market. Diana comes to GSMA from her former role as Editor of Wireless Week and...

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