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Facebook confirms data of 2.7 million Europeans may have been ‘improperly shared’

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BRUSSELS, Belgium – The Facebook data of “up to 2.7 million Europeans or people in the EU may have been improperly shared with Cambridge Analytica,” European Commission spokesperson Christian Wigand said from Brussels, Friday, during a press conference at the European Commission headquarters, citing a written statement from the social media giant.

Wigand described some of the new data protection rules implemented by the EU.

“If a company collects a person’s data for a certain purpose, it has to obtain its consent and under the new rules its explicit and affirmative consent,” he said.

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According to him, if a company wants to forward it to a third party or use it for a different purpose, it has to inform the consumer of a possible data breach within 72 hours.

The EU spokesperson stated that data protection authorities will be equipped with sanctioning powers that “will be proportionate to the offence but will be up to four percent of company’s global annual turnover.”

Wigand said that the EU had received a letter from Facebook on Thursday which also explains the steps Facebook has taken in response. “There will be a phone call between commissioner Jourova and Facebook COO Sheryl Sandberg early next week,” affirmed the EU official.

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