Meta-owned social media apps, including Facebook and Instagram, could be banned in the UK and in Europe as a whole.
Mark Zuckerberg has threatened to pull “core services” from the region following a dispute over data protection laws with Europe.
Meta has quietly issued a warning saying that it could shut down the services if Europe doesn’t let it perform “transatlantic data transfers”.
This means transferring people’s private data from secure servers in Europe, where they are heavily regulated, to the US.
In an annual report to a US government agency, Meta said that the company will “probably” have to stop offering its “most significant products and services” if a new framework is not adopted.
While Meta claims that sharing data between countries and regions is critical to providing its services, the European Court of Justice has prevented it from doing so since July 2020. This is largely to protect users across Europe from having their data shared or sold without their knowledge.