Ireland investigates the processing of data of minors by Instagram in the European Union

The Irish Data Protection Commissioner is investigating Instagram for its treatment of the personal data of minors of the European Union. The objective is to find out if the platform violates the community laws that protect the privacy of users.

The Irish Regulator is the main regulator of the EU countries and its action is developed under the framework of the General Data Protection Regulation. Given that a large part of the tech giants have their European headquarters located in Ireland, they are usually in charge of carrying out this type of investigation and imposing the corresponding fines.

An investigation ensures that at least 60 million users under the age of 18 were able to change their personal Instagram account to a business one

Contact information for minors may have been publicly exposed

The investigation has been initiated after the complaint of an American data scientist, David Stier, who last year claimed to have estimated after the analysis of thousands of accounts that at least 60 million users under the age of 18 could change their personal account of Instagram to a business.

Instagram business accounts required users to make contact forms public, such as their phone number or email address. It is the reason why the regulator DPC, for its acronym in English, is investigating in relation to minors.

Facebook denies this circumstance, according to BBC, but is cooperating with the Irish Data Protection Commissioner.

Stier’s inquiries, which were reflected in an article, caused changes in the US platform. The public contact information was removed from the HTML code of the profiles to prevent it from being scraped and ending up in databases and, in addition, currently it is possible not to include public contact information to business accounts.