Trying to continue to transmit EU user data to the United States, Facebook initiates legal action against Irish regulators

Facebook took legal action against the Irish data regulator on Friday to try to block a preliminary order that might prevent the company from transferring user data from the European Union to the United States .

The social media giant has applied for judicial review of the methods used by the Irish Data Protection Commission on the grounds that it is too early for the commission to reach preliminary conclusions.

A Facebook spokesperson said: “The lack of safe, reliable and legal international data transmission will have devastating consequences for the European economy. We urge regulators to take pragmatic and appropriate approaches until a sustainable long-term solution can be reached.”

Just a few months before the Irish Data Protection Commission issued the above-mentioned order, the European Court of Justice ruled that the data transmission standards between the EU and the US were insufficient to protect the privacy of European citizens. The court concluded that EU citizens have no effective way to challenge US government surveillance, and therefore restricted the way US companies can send European user data to the US.

In theory, US government agencies such as the National Security Agency (NSA) can require Internet companies such as Facebook and Google to hand over their data without the knowledge of EU citizens.

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