Statement on Facebook proceedings

The Federal Court of Australia today granted leave to the Australian Information Commissioner to serve legal documents on US-based Facebook Inc and Facebook Ireland.

The Commissioner lodged proceedings against those Facebook entities in the Federal Court last month, alleging the social media platform has committed serious and/or repeated interferences with privacy in contravention of Australian privacy law. The Commissioner subsequently made an interlocutory application seeking leave to serve the initiating court documents on Facebook.

The Court today found that “the material demonstrates a genuine argument about contravention, sufficient to justify causing the respondents to be subject to the litigation in Australia where the merit of that argument can be judicially determined.”

Australian Information Commissioner and Privacy Commissioner Angelene Falk welcomed the Court’s ruling and said this opens the path for the case to move forward to the substance of the proceedings.

A link to the decision is available on the Federal Court’s website.

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