Meta Fined $400M For Violating EU Privacy Laws

The New York Times reports:

Meta was fined roughly $400 million for breaking European Union data privacy laws for its treatment of children’s data on Instagram, the latest in a series of steps by authorities in Europe and the United States to crack down on what information is collected and shared by companies about young people online.

European laws give children’s data special protections. In 2020, Ireland’s Data Protection Commission began investigating Instagram for making the accounts of children aged 13 to 17 set to public by default, and for allowing teenagers with business accounts on Instagram, many of them aspiring influencers, to make public their email addresses and phone numbers.

Meta said it disagreed with the decision and planned to appeal, setting up what could be a lengthy legal process. The company said the inquiry focused on old settings that were updated over a year ago, and that it has since added several more features to improve the safety of young users.

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