Zuckerberg Bomb: Thinking of shutting down Facebook and Instagram in Europe

Mark Zuckerberg and his team seem to be considering shutting down Facebook and Instagram in Europe

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Mark Zuckerberg and his team seem to be considering shutting down Facebook and Instagram in Europe if Meta fails to process European data on US servers. But what does that mean?

If Meta does not have the option to transfer, store and process data from its European users on US-based servers, Facebook and Instagram could be shut down across Europe, the social media owner warned in the annual his report.

The key issue for Meta is transatlantic data transmissions, regulated by the so-called security shield, and other models used by Meta to store data from European users on US servers. The current agreements to facilitate data transfer are currently under strict EU control.

In its annual report to the US Securities and Exchange Commission, Meta warns that unless a new framework is adopted that would allow the company to use current "or alternative" agreement standards, the company will "probably" no longer be able to offer its "most important products and services", including Facebook and Instagram, in the EU, according to various media outlets, such as iTWire, The Guardian and Side Line Magazine.

The exchange of data between countries and regions is vital for the provision of its services, says Meta.

Until now, Meta has been using the transatlantic data framework called the Personal Data Protection Shield as the legal basis for data transmission.

However, this treaty was annulled by the European Court of Justice in July 2020 due to breaches of data protection. Since then, the EU and the US have been working on a new or updated version of the treaty.

In addition to the privacy shield, Meta uses the so-called model agreements, or Standard Conventional Clauses, as the primary legal basis for the processing of data by European users on US servers.

These model agreements are equally under the control of Brussels and other EU members.

Meta's answer

According to City AM, John Nolan, head of technology media and advertising communications at Meta, based in London, did not deny or downgrade the above. Instead, a statement was shared by Nick Clegg, Meta's Vice President for Global Affairs and Communications.

Clegg warned that "the lack of secure and legal international data transmissions would hurt the economy and hamper the growth of EU data-driven businesses". "The impact will be felt by companies large and small, in many areas," he continued. "Businesses need clear, global rules, backed by a strong rule of law, to protect transatlantic data flows in the long run."

"In the worst case scenario, this could mean that a small technology company in Germany could no longer use a US-based cloud provider. "A Spanish product development company could no longer operate in multiple time zones." "A French retailer will no longer be able to maintain a call center in Morocco," Clegg said.

He continued: "As managers work for a sustainable, long-term solution, we urge regulators to take a proportionate and realistic approach to minimize the inconvenience to the thousands of businesses that, like Facebook, rely on these data transfer mechanisms. in a safe way ".

The case of Ireland

The Irish Data Protection Commission told Meta in August 2020 that it had provisionally concluded that the use of the standard agreements was not in line with the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR).

The processing of European data on US servers therefore had to be suspended by the Irish Data Protection Commission. However, this was only a preliminary conclusion, so, in fact, no change occurred.

The company appealed to the court to stop the order, but the judges ruled that the Irish Data Protection Commission investigation could continue.

The final verdict is expected to be published in the first half of this year. If the Irish Data Protection Commission does find that the model agreements are illegal, Meta may decide that it is no longer possible to offer some of its services across the EU.

Regarding the case of Ireland, Clegg said: "The Irish Data Protection Commission has launched an investigation into Facebook-controlled data transfers between the EU and the US and suggested that standard contractual clauses (SCCs) could not be used in practice for data transmissions. EU-US ».

"Although this approach is subject to further processing, if followed, it could have implications for SCC-based businesses and the online services on which many people and businesses rely," he concluded.

Source: News247