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Gloucestershire Business News

Google and Facebook could be fined billions under new law

Companies like Google and Facebook could be fined billions if they fail to protect users' privacy under a new law.

The fines are part of the Data Protection Bill, which the government is introducing to give people more control over their online data, as reported by Sky .

It will place new requirements on companies about how they are allowed to hold and use data about people.

In the case of the most serious breaches, companies could be fined £17m or 4% of their global turnover, whichever is higher.

Companies like Google and Facebook which use individuals' data to sell advertisements, are likely to be hardest hit.

Under the new proposals:

People will have the 'right to be forgotten' online

Individuals can ask social media platforms to delete information they posted when they were children

People must give consent for their personal information to be collected online

Businesses often check prospective employees' social media before employing them. The new proposals will allow people to 'clean up their act' online and not have potentially damaging posts visible for many years.

Instead of 'opting out' of marketing information, users will now have to 'opt in'. It means companies will have to work harder with their online advertising to reach the right people, after Facebook and Google had made it so easy for them in recent years.

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