Facebook Fined by Norway for Privacy Breaches
Social media giant contests Norwegian regulator's imposition of daily penalty.
The parent company of Facebook and Instagram, Meta Platforms (META.O), has appealed to a Norwegian court to halt a fine imposed by the country's data regulator for breaching user privacy. Since 14 August, Meta has been fined 1 million Norwegian krone (£77,000) each day for harvesting user data and exploiting it for targeted adverts, a common practice among major technology firms.
The company is requesting a temporary injunction against the penalty, which issues a daily fine until 3 November. "Meta has already pledged to request consent (from users)," said Christian Reusch, a lawyer for the company, to the court on Tuesday.
On 14 July, the Norwegian data regulator, Datatilsynet, notified Meta of its intent to fine the firm unless it took remedial action. The regulator proceeded with the fine on 7 August. Previously on 1 August, Meta had agreed to ask European users for consent before enabling targeted adverts, citing a January decision from its primary regulator in Ireland, where the company is headquartered.
Reusch also told the court Datatilsynet used an "expedited process" that was unnecessary and did not provide the company adequate time to respond. Datatilsynet will present its arguments on Wednesday. The regulator has previously said it was unclear when and how Meta would seek consent from users and that in the interim, their rights were being violated.
"Datatilsynet will argue that there is no basis for an injunction," said Tobias Judin, head of Datatilsynet's international section, to Reuters. Datatilsynet could make the fine permanent by referring its decision to the European Data Protection Board, which has the authority to do so if it agrees with the Norwegian regulator. That could also extend the decision's scope to the rest of Europe. Datatilsynet has yet to take this step.
The Oslo district court hearing will last two days.
Meta fined £77,000 daily by Norway for privacy breaches
Company contests regulator's imposition of fine
Meta previously agreed to seek user consent for targeted ads