Privacy Complaint Filed Against X Over EU Ads Targeting Sensitive Data


Elon Musk’s X, formerly known as Twitter, is under scrutiny in Europe as a new privacy complaint has been filed regarding its ad targeting practices. The complaint, filed with the Dutch data protection authority by privacy rights not-for-profit noyb, alleges that X has failed to enforce its own advertising guidelines.

Key Takeaway

A privacy complaint has been filed against X for allegedly allowing the use of sensitive personal data for ad targeting, in violation of EU regulations.

Allegations Against X

The complaint accuses X of allowing advertisers to use sensitive personal data, such as political affiliations and religious beliefs, to target users with ads, despite the platform’s terms and conditions prohibiting such practices. The European Commission used X’s ad targeting tools to promote a controversial legislative proposal, which involved scanning people’s messages for child sexual abuse material (CSAM), in the Netherlands.

Legal Violations

The complaint highlights that the use of sensitive personal data for ad targeting on X violates the EU’s General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) and the recently enacted Digital Services Act (DSA). Both regulations impose strict limits on the processing of sensitive personal data for ad targeting and require explicit consent from the individuals involved, which X allegedly failed to obtain.

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