New privacy rules coming into effect in the EU next month are “very positive”, said Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg on Wednesday (4 April) – announcing that they will have an effect beyond Europe.
He spoke to reporters via a conference call to discuss the various issues that have put the social networking giant in a bad light recently, like fake news and the use of data by Cambridge Analytica.
Zuckerberg rejected a story published by news agency Reuters which headlined that only European Facebook users would benefit from the EU’s new general data protection regulation (GDPR).
“Overall, I think regulations like the GDPR are very positive,” said Zuckerberg.
“I was somewhat surprised by yesterday’s Reuters story that ran on this. The reporter asked me if … we were planning on running the controls for GDPR across the world and my answer was yes.”
The GDPR, which will come into force on 25 May, will constitute a major overhaul of privacy rules that will impact all companies handling personal data.
It will give new rights to EU citizens, like the right to know what personal data a company has collected, and the right to receive a copy of that data. It will also enshrine in EU law the so-called right to be forgotten, and will give consumers a right to transfer their data from one service provider to a similar one.
The regulation is unique in the world, but has the possibility of setting a global standard because it will apply to any internet company that targets European consumers.
“Is it going to be exactly the same format? Probably not. We need to figure out what makes sense in different markets for the different laws in different places.”