Meta Threatens To Shut Down Facebook And Instagram Operations Across Europe

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Meta Threatens To Shut Down Facebook And Instagram Operations Across Europe

Meta, the company formerly known as Facebook, that controls both the Facebook and Instagram social media sites, has said that it may have to shut down operations in Europe as it could soon find itself unable to transfer data between Europe and the United States.


The warning of the shutdown was found in Meta's annual report which was filed with the US Securities and Exchange Commission. The report warned that new European legislation surrounding personal data could impede the company's activities and make them unworkable.


In the past, the company has relied upon Privacy Shield to send information between the continents, however this was invalidated. The other system Meta uses to transfer data is Standard Contractual Clauses (SCCs) but these have been criticised by privacy analysts, and in 2020 the Irish Data Protection Commission ruled that such agreements are not in line with Europe's General Data Protection Regulation.


In effect, a new system must be in place in order for Meta to continue with its business. It said in the report:


"If a new transatlantic data transfer framework is not adopted and we are unable to continue to rely on SCCs or rely upon other alternative means of data transfers from Europe to the United States, we will likely be unable to offer a number of our most significant products and services, including Facebook and Instagram, in Europe, which would materially and adversely affect our business, financial condition, and results of operations."


Issues with data transfer in the EU are not Meta's only concern. Similar legislation is said to be being discussed in nations such as the UK and Brazil and could further disrupt Meta's work.


This isn't the first time however, that there have been claims that nations would have to shut down Facebook or that Facebook would no longer be operational. In 2021 Facebook had a huge rift with the Australian government over legislation that would require Facebook to pay news providers for using their stories. So far, Facebook has continued to operate in Australia. It seems unlikely that whatever happens, Meta will shut down given the huge public outcry that would emerge in these nations.


[Based on reporting by: The Independent]


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Thinking Humanity: Meta Threatens To Shut Down Facebook And Instagram Operations Across Europe
Meta Threatens To Shut Down Facebook And Instagram Operations Across Europe
Meta, the company formerly known as Facebook, that controls both the Facebook and Instagram social media sites, has said that it may have to shut down
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