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2019 will be Privacy Rights’ Break Out Year
Anyone who doubts that 2019 will be the year that the EU’s revolutionary privacy regime, the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR), finally starts to bite should look to the complaints filed just last week against Google by consumer protection agencies from seven EU countries. The 44 page complaint (PDF) filed with national data protection authorities in the Netherlands, Poland, the Czech Republic, Greece, Norway, Slovenia, and Sweden accused Google of engaging in deceptive practices to track its users’ location. Google, the complaints allege, uses subterfuge and “dark patterns” to nudge users to give consent to information like their mobile phone location history. Because of that, Google “lacks a valid legal ground for processing the [location] data in question” because its users’ consent “is not freely given” to Google – a violation of one of the key tenets of GDPR, which went into effect in the EU in May.
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