European privacywaakhonden examine Windows 10

European privacywaakhonden examine Windows 10

Photo: Bloomberg

A group of European privacywaakhonden will investigate whether or not the operating system Windows 10 from Microsoft will be on the right way to deal with personal data.

In a letter (pdf) to the U.s. company expressing the supervisors their concerns about the protection of privacy in the latest version of Windows.

The letter is signed by Isabelle Falque-Pierrotin, chairman of the Article 29 working party (WP 29), the partnership of privacywaakhonden of all EU countries.

The Dutch Authority for Personal data works in the research together with colleagues from Germany, France, Hungary, Slovenia, Spain and the United Kingdom. The supervisor from the German state of Bavaria takes the lead.


The organisations are concerned about the default settings of Windows 10 and “an apparent lack of control for the user to the collection or processing of data to avoid”. Also, there would be no good reason to many types of data are collected.

The supervisors say happy that Microsoft recently several new privacyhulpmiddelen has launched, including a website to which different institutions can be found. With a major update for Windows 10, which in the coming months, will appear, will also be the privacy settings within Windows itself simplified. In addition, it is possible to collection of more types of data to stop.

According to the watchdogs, however, it is still unclear to what extent new and existing users of Windows 10 will be informed about the data collection. They point out that the collection of personal data is permissible only if people are well informed agree.

Users of Windows 10 to send different types of data to Microsoft for the services of the company to be able to improve. It includes information about the user’s device, crashes, and use of apps. Privéinformatie as the content of e-mails and documents is not sent to Microsoft.

During the installation of Windows 10 will default to the “full” data collection turned on, but users can choose to switch over to the more limited “basic” collection.

Microsoft has not yet responded to the letter of the WP-29.

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