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EU’s New Draft Rules on Internet Increase Individuals’ Control of Personal Data

Posted Jan 25, 2012 6:39 PM CDT
By Martha Neil

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After hearing news that Google plans to integrate individual customer data from multiple products into a single cauldron of information, some users clearly aren't happy.

A Washington Post article that gives step-by-step instructions on how to close a Google account is currently the No. 1 article on the newspaper's most-read list.

For Facebook users who may have shared dubious material with a small circle of friends in years past, another issue looms: They have only a week or so to clean up their posts before administrators automatically make historic information more readily accessible to a wider circle by imposing the new Timeline format on them, the Daily Mail reports.

Meanwhile, European lawmakers are moving toward increased privacy rights with draft rules to give individuals the right to control their own personal information and erase Web information if they wish, according to Reuters, the Telegraph and Bloomberg. The rules, which will be implemented within the next two years, will be enforceable by fines of up to 2 percent of a violator's yearly global sales. They are expected to apply to search engines and social networking sites as well as other Internet platforms.

While the revised regulatory scheme would streamline multiple compliance agencies, observers say it is likely to impose onerous new requirements on businesses involved in the Internet.

Earlier coverage:

ABAJournal.com: "Google Plans to Combine User Data for All Products; Individuals Won’t Be Able to Opt Out"

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