Sunday, April 07, 2013

Britain attempts to opt out of EU rules that let people easily delete their online data

Freedom to shut up

Britain is attempting to opt out of a European initiative allowing people to easily remove their details from online service providers such as Facebook.

The controversial move has caused uproar among privacy campaigners, who today accused the government of blocking an 'essential move'

The rule, known as the 'right to be forgotten' has been developed by the EU justice commissioners in the face of growing complaints about the way Facebook and other social media giants retain information.

In its current form, which is not finalised, article 17 of the Data Protection Regulation provides for punitive fines – up to 2% of global turnover – for companies that refuse to comply with requests to erase customers' personal details.

Nick Pickles, director of privacy and civil liberties group Big Brother Watch, said: 'The right to be forgotten is a political sound bite that got out of control, but the idea behind it is an essential move.

'It’s absolutely right that for companies who do not legally need to keep data, if you leave a service you should be able to delete your data wherever it appears across that service.  'This change gives citizens that right.'

Britain's objection to the EU move is that unrealistic expectations will be created by the right's expansive title because the controls proposed will be relatively modest in their impact on the way data spreads, or is traded, across websites.

Mr Pickles agreed with these concerns, but called for the bill to be saved.



Anonymous said...

One would think that by now, the millions of people who use these so-called "social media sites" would realize what they are truly about.


It's truly incredible how completely stupid people can be when they have an opportunity to get some attention for themselves.

Anonymous said...

People who own a harddrive or server should not have to delete things on it if they dont want to.