The European Parliament is calling for a full audit of Facebook after a series of security breaches. These include the Cambridge Analytica scandal and the recent data breach effecting 30M users. Therefore, we take a look at the proposal and what this could mean for the future of digital security. Let’s discuss news that’s newsworthy!
MEPs urge the tech giants to let EU bodies perform a full audit. This allows them to assess data privacy and the security of users’ personal data; access and exploits extend over 87M user accounts! Additionally, it’s advisable for them to make changes to fight election interference. Facebook’s data scandals breached users trust and EU law. Early October saw the EU parliament’s civil liberties committee call for a full audit, as well as an update to EU competition rules. This update will show the reality of the situation, in addition to the possible monopoly of social media platforms. The committee states it’s a global issue affecting referendums, thus restoring protection and trust to users and elections is important.
MEPs suggest the data exposed by Cambridge Analytica may have been used for political gain. This extends to the UK referendum on Brexit, as well as targeting voters in the 2016 US election. Adapting electoral laws to account for digital campaigns is thus a priority and a matter of urgency. MEPs propose the following: applying electoral safeguards online with rules on spending transparency and limits. Making it easier to recognise online political paid ads. Banning profiling for electoral purposes, such as political preferences. Labelling content shared by bots, speeding up the removal of fake accounts whilst working with independent fact checkers to combat false information. Lastly, investigations carried out specifically by member states with Eurojust’s support; regarding online political space misuse.
A UK parliamentary committee recently stressed the need to update electoral law, accounting for the digital risks to the democratic process. Meanwhile, Facebook have been conducting their own checks on political ads. However MEP’s certainly believe the tech giants should be doing more.