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France tells Facebook to stop moving user data overseas

Privacy regulator feels that the social network should give users more control over their data.

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France's privacy regulator has told Facebook that the site is in violation of the country's data protection act. Furthermore, the social network has been given just three months to get its act together, or it'll face the threat of sanctions. The charges leveled against the site include the fact that it pushes data relating to its European users to servers based in the US. That's been a bone of contention across the continent, which is why the provisions governing such actions -- Safe Harbor -- were declared invalid last year. That means that Facebook's been sending your private messages to servers accessible by the NSA without any permission.

The invalidation of Safe Harbor is one of several contentious issues that the regulators are picking up on. For instance, authorities found that Facebook's use of cookies to monitor visitors is in violation if French Law. In addition, the site is charged with not making it clear enough that it collects data on the sexual orientation, religion and political views of its users. Finally, Facebook sells people's personal data for targeted advertising, but provides people with no way to control who gets that data. Even though Europe has already agreed (in principle) a replacement for Safe Harbor, it looks as if Facebook will still have to weigh up if it's worth remaining in France with these additional conditions.

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