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Facebook wins EU court fight against class action lawsuit

Staff Writer |
The EU's top court dismissed a bid by an Austrian activist to bring a class action against Facebook for privacy breaches, although he can sue Facebook on a personal basis.

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Max Schrems said he would now push ahead in an Austrian court with the individual case against Facebook's Irish division for alleged rights violations including personal data.

Facebook welcomed the judgment and said it looked forward to "resolving" the case brought by Schrems, a campaigner who has previously brought down a landmark EU-US data sharing pact.

"Mr Schrems may bring an individual action in Austria against Facebook Ireland," the Luxembourg-based European Court of Justice said in a statement.

"By contrast, as the assignee of other consumers' claims, he cannot benefit from the consumer forum for the purposes of a collective action."

Schrems had lodged legal cases in an Austrian court on behalf of himself and seven other users in Austria, Germany and India against Facebook in Ireland as a way of starting a class action suit.

Austria's Supreme Court had referred the matter to the ECJ after Schrems's lawsuit was first thrown out and then restored by the country's courts.

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