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Google passing on European user data to the US

Google has admitted that they have also passed on European user data to United States intelligence agencies, much in the same way that Microsoft’s UK managing director, Gordon Frazer said that they have been compelled to do, when the US government requests it, no matter where the data is hosted around the world.

According to Softpedia, Google said that they have been compelled to comply with requests from US intelligence agencies to reveal data stored amongst its European data centers, a move which could well be a violation of European Union data protection laws.

Softpedia stated that the main problem lies with the USA PATRIOT ACT, which tells companies that are incorporated in the United States that they have to hand over data which has been administered by their foreign subsidiaries if they are requested to do so.

In June this year, Microsoft admitted that they had been passing on European customer data from its Office 365 cloud service to various US government departments, which caught the eyes of various members of the European Parliament who said that they were concerned by the news. They are now highly likely to start an official inquiry into the news.

European Union legislation requires that companies must protect the personal information of EU citizens, something, it seems that companies such as Google and Microsoft cannot do.

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