The German Competition Authority rules that a social network abused its dominant position by improperly combining the user data that is collected (Facebook)

On February 6th, the Bundeskartellamt (German Federal Cartel Office - “FCO”) ruled that Facebook abused its dominance by improperly combining user data that it collected. The FCO imposed far-reaching restrictions on Facebook’s processing of user data in the future, including a requirement that Facebook must obtain “voluntary consent” from consumers before using such data. [1] Some celebrate the decision as an innovative enforcement approach to protect consumers. Others wonder if the ruling over-stretches the limits of competition law. This article outlines the background to the FCO’s investigation, its key findings, and possible enforcement lessons to be learned from the decision, both in the EU and U.S. Relevant Conduct Users that wish to join Facebook need to accept its terms and

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Thomas Höppner, The German Competition Authority rules that a social network abused its dominant position by improperly combining the user data that is collected (Facebook), 7 February 2019, e-Competitions February 2019, Art. N° 96456

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