The data protection authority from Hamburg has told Facebook to allow users to choose pseudonyms on their accounts.
Facebook will have to stop forcing users from revealing their real names for their accounts. The order came after actions of a German Watchdog which took Facebook to court in June 2015. Facebook users will now be able to use fake names or pseudonyms.
In June 2015 a Belgian privacy Watchdog faced off against Facebook in court. The social media site was accused of tracking its user’s activities. A woman had complained Facebook blocked her account after she had used a pseudonym and had asked for ID to the Watchdog in Hamburg.
Facebook had also changed her name into her real name without permission. The woman has hidden her real name to avoid contact for business purposes.
According to the Hamburg data protection authority Facebook has no right to change user names by themselves. Furthermore Facebook does not have the right to ask for official ID’s of users.
The spokesperson for Facebook stated to Reuters that the use of real names authenticates user privacy as the community knows who they are connecting with on the social media site.