The French watched by the United States?

In any case, this is the concern of the National Commission for Computing and Liberties (Cnil).

The body announced on Thursday the formal notice of a website publisher using the Google Analytics tool, describing data transfers to the United States as "illegal".

Seized by the Austrian NGO for the defense of privacy NOYB (“None of Your Business”: “this is not your business”), the Cnil considered that the conditions for transferring the data collected by this statistical tool, for lack of framework, could expose French users to surveillance programs in the United States.

Bye bye Google Analytics

“If Google has adopted additional measures to regulate transfers (…) these are not enough to exclude the possibility of access by American intelligence services to this data”, considers the regulator.

This publisher – whose name the Cnil did not reveal – now has one month to comply with the European data protection regulation (RGPD), by ceasing to use the Google Analytics tool under current conditions.

After this period, he may be subject to sanctions.

An analysis tool in question

Omnipresent on the internet, Google Analytics is used to collect statistics on website traffic.

Two other French site managers are also the subject of complaints for its use.

“All actors are invited to ask themselves the question” of the use of this tool and “must feel alerted” by this decision, underlined a Cnil official.

This formal notice marks a new twist in the saga of data transfers between Europe and the United States, after an initial decision by the Austrian authority targeting Google in mid-January.

The American group then tried to minimize this decision and called on the European Union and the United States to negotiate a new legal framework as soon as possible.

An “illegal” use

"It is interesting to note that the various European data protection authorities all come to the same conclusion: the use of Google Analytics is illegal", greeted Max Schrems, founder of NOYB, in a press release.

In total, the NGO filed 101 complaints in Europe against data controllers transferring personal data, collected by Google Analytics or its Facebook Connect counterpart.

The NGO had paved the way for these procedures by snatching in July 2020 the invalidation of the agreement on the transfer of personal data to the United States (called Privacy Shield) by the Court of Justice of the European Union (CJEU ).

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