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Facebook deletes European facial recognition data, satisfying German privacy agency

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Privacy authorities in Ireland and Germany are satisfied that Facebook has deleted its European facial recognition database, IDG reports. Both the Office of the Irish Data Protection Commissioner and Hamburg Commissioner for Data Protection and Freedom of Information have reportedly said that they examined Facebook's source code and were convinced that recognition templates and other personal data is no longer present or being used, though we're not sure precisely how they confirmed it was deleted altogether. The data was originally used to suggest user tags on photos uploaded to Facebook, a tool that was disabled in Europe last year after an Irish security audit.

Though Ireland's data protection agency praised Facebook after it disabled Tag Suggest, Germany reopened its investigation last August, maintaining that the company still needed to remove data it had gathered earlier without express consent from users. Now Ulrich Kühn of the Hamburg DPC says that no further action is being taken. "For the time being," he told IDG, it is settled."