Facebook says it can ban Facebook and Instagram from operating in Europe thanks to new privacy rules that affect the way the social network transfers data between the EU and the US.

The company filed a lawsuit in the Irish High Court on 10 September. Facebook challenged the order of the Irish authorities for Consumer Data Protection that threatens Facebook with blocking the transfer of data of European citizens to the USA.

In case the social network is banned from transferring data to the US, then the company says it is obliged to stop providing Facebook and Instagram services in Europe.

Facebook counts 410 million active users in Europe. The social network has also complained about dishonest treatment and that no other American company has been targeted in this way.

In July of this year, the so-called Privacy Shield that would guarantee data transfer between the US and Europe failed.

In the worst case scenario a German startup would not be able to use the cloud services of an American company.

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