Daily Management Review

Facebook Files Case Against EU Antitrust Regulator Over Excessive Of Data Requests


Facebook Files Case Against EU Antitrust Regulator Over Excessive Of Data Requests
Antitrust regulators of the European Union have been sued by the social media giant Facebook for allegedly seeking more information from Facebook than what the social media platform deemed necessary.
Facebook alleged that the antitrust regulators of the EU had sought from the company highly personal details in relation to the agency’s investigations into the data and marketplace operated by the company, said the United States based largest social media platform of the world on Monday.
It has been over a year that Facebook has been put under the scanner of the EU competition enforcers. One of the investigations carried out by the EU antitrust body was focused on the trove of data of its users that Facebook possess while another focused on the online marketplace that was launched by the company in 2016 and is used by 800 million Facebook users in 70 countries for buying and selling products and services. The company said that since last year, it has provided the Commission with 315,000 documents that is which equivalent to about 1.7 million pages, Facebook said.
“The exceptionally broad nature of the Commission's requests means we would be required to turn over predominantly irrelevant documents that have nothing to do with the Commission's investigations, including highly sensitive personal information such as employees' medical information, personal financial documents, and private information about family members of employees,” Facebook associate general counsel Tim Lamb said in a statement. “We think such requests should be reviewed by the EU Courts.”
It would defend its case in court, the Commission said.
People at the EU regulators have been seeking out about 2,500 search phrases from among the documents provided by Facebook, which include phrases such as “big question”, “shut down” and “not good for us”, said reports quoting a person familiar with issue.
A number of such terms could be found in employees' health information, performance evaluation and even job applications to the company and these are not relevant to the EU investigations, the source reportedly said.
According to a filing in the court by Facebook, the company is also trying to secure a halt order for such requests for data until judges rule on the case. For this purpose the company has also approached Luxembourg-based General Court, Europe's second-highest court, and asked for interim measures, in addition to the two lawsuits against the Commission.