Facebook’s what? Facebook’s Dating Service will have to continue its elongated wait to become active in Europe after the top Irish regulator raised multiple data privacy and protection concerns according to The Wall Street Journal. Under EU rules, companies are required to perform a Data Processing Impact Assessment (DPIA) before launching a product or service that could have an impact on data from their clients. Ireland’s Data Protection Commission said Facebook had planned to launch Facebook Dating the day before Valentine’s Day, but said it was “very concerned” to hear so late about it. Facebook states they informed the Irish Data Protection Commission about the launch on February 3.
How does it work? From your main Facebook profile you can opt into the new Facebook Dating app which creates a totally separate account from your original profile. The only information carried over is your name and age. The app will present you with potential matches based on your location, preferences, likes, interests and other factors. You can choose to match with people who attend the same Facebook events or are part of the same Facebook groups.
While Facebook’s hopeful Valentine’s Day unveiling of their service in Europe has been halted, the dating service has been active in the U.S. for the past year and also in 20 other countries. So far there have been no reports or cases of specific malicious data breaches or attacks of any Facebook Dating users, but the Irish Data Protection Commission had their concerns for good reason. Facebook recently has had a plethora of legal cases filed against them for a variety of issues regarding negligent or misuse of their users data. Just last month a judge from Massachusetts ordered Facebook to turn over data on thousands of apps that may have mishandled personal information from its users.
If you’re currently in Europe and you were planning on finding a Valentine over Facebook’s new dating service you will have to look elsewhere, but even if you are currently in a country where their service is active, we still say look elsewhere.