Europe slams Facebook's privacy settings

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Europe slammed as unacceptable the changes by social networking website Facebook to its privacy settings, that would allow the profiles of its users to be made available to third party websites.

"It is unacceptable that the company fundamentally changed the default settings on its social-networking platform to the detriment of a user", the group of European data protections authorities said in a letter Wednesday.

The EU group, known as the Article 29 Working Party, met on May 11-12 in Brussels to discuss safer networking principles.

It reminded Facebook that user profile information "is limited to self-selected contacts" and any further access "should be an explicit choice of the user."

On April 21, the social networking site rolled out a series of new features including the ability for partner websites to incorporate Facebook data, a move that would further expand the network's presence on the Internet.