Italian watchdog fines Facebook 7 million euros over improper data use

Italy's competition watchdog said on Wednesday it had fined Facebook 7 million euros ($8.5 million) for not complying with a request by the regulator to correct improper commercial practices in the group's treatment of user data.

Facebook was not immediately available for comment.

In November 2018, the antitrust body ruled that Facebook had not informed users properly about its collection and use of data. 

It fined the U.S. company 5 million euros ($5.5 million) and asked it to publish an amended statement on the homepage of its website for Italy, on the Facebook app and on the personal page of each registered Italian user.

"The current investigation has proved that ...(the company has) not published the amended statement and has not stopped the established unfair practice," the regulator said in its statement.

Given the economic value of the data for Facebook, it said users should be put in a position to decide whether it should be used. 

($1 = 0.8282 euros)

(Reporting by Francesca Piscioneri; editing by Barbara Lewis)

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