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Parliamentary questions
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12 February 2020
Question for written answer
to the Commission
Rule 138
Kosma Złotowski
 Answer in writing 
 Subject: Sale of personal data of Avast Software users

Software manufacturer Avast Software has been selling the browsing history data of over 435 million of its users, including EU citizens, for years. The recipients of these data were major international corporations.

The company explains that it acted lawfully as it had fulfilled all the conditions of Regulation (EU) 2016/679 of the European Parliament and of the Council of 27 April 2016 on the protection of natural persons with regard to the processing of personal data and on the free movement of such data, and repealing Directive 95/46/EC in terms of obtaining consent for the processing of data. However, many consumers were not aware of how their data were being processed.

Given consumers’ negative reactions to Avast Software:

Does the Commission consider existing protection of software users against the processing of personal data, including trading in it, without their knowledge and informed consent to be adequate?

Does the Commission plan to take legislative action to restrict the use of and trade in users’ personal data by technology companies by making it obligatory for requests for consent to the processing of such data to be more transparent?

As part of the construction of the digital single market, does the Commission intend to propose regulations to tighten up the rules on collecting and trading in personal data in order to force administrators to be more transparent in the processing and protection of personal data?

Last updated: 27 February 2020Legal notice - Privacy policy