In an opinion piece published today, Facebook's head policy official for Europe, Richard Allen, commented that the current investigations from various European national privacy regulators could potentially fragment the regulation landscape. This fragmentation could result in deeply hampering the ability of companies to evolve, as dealing with each country separately would strain resources.
The primary threat identified in Allen's commentary was that European companies could end up falling behind the rest of the world, as new products and service would not immediately be available to EU citizens.
“If a car made in France or Germany had to meet separate technical requirements in Poland or Spain, Europe's car manufacturers would face serious handicaps,” Allen writes.
Previously, Facebook has dealt only with Irish privacy regulators, due to the location of its European headquarters, and despite dealing with “gruelling audits” privacy activists believe the California-based company remains in violation of EU policy.
“Facebook's costs would increase and people in Europe would notice new features arriving more slowly, or not at all,” Allen writes in his piece in the Financial Times. “If it is allowed to stand, complying with EU law will no longer be enough.”