Norway has banned personalised advertising on Instagram and Facebook. The reason: persistent violations of EU law. The ban is to come into force at the beginning of August 2023 and will initially apply for three months.
The Norwegian data protection authority Datatilsynet has imposed a ban on personalised advertising on Instagram and Facebook. The organisation announced this in an official statement. According to the statement, the ban will come into force on 4 August 2023 and will initially be in place for three months.
The reason for the decision, according to the data protectors, are persistent violations of EU law. In the meantime, Facebook and Instagram parent company Meta is to be given the opportunity to adapt its services in order to rule out further violations of the law.
Norway bans personalised advertising on Instagram and Facebook
The ban will be in place for three months, or until the company can prove that it is complying with the law. If Meta does not comply with the decision, the company faces a fine of the equivalent of 88,510.97 euros per day.
Background: Meta tracks the activities of its users on Instagram and Facebook to collect data. Using information such as interests and locations, the company creates profiles to serve personalised advertising.
Advertising ban for Meta: Norway pre-empts Irish data protection authority
As early as December 2022, the Irish data protection authority DPC, which is responsible for Meta within the European Economic Area, declared this practice of data collection and personalised advertising illegal. Since then, the US company has made some changes, but at the beginning of July 2023, the European Court of Justice (ECJ) announced that Meta was still not acting in accordance with the law.
The Norwegian data protection authority has therefore now reacted with a ban. In doing so, it is to a certain extent pre-empting the Irish authority, which has not yet enforced its decision against Meta. However, neither the EU nor Norway want to ban personalised advertising per se.
For example, Meta is free to collect information such as gender, age or place of residence for marketing purposes. However, data collection and personalised advertising based on interest and location is not in line with the European General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR).