Tech companies ‘shifted superficially’ on privacy, committee chairman says

Tech companies have “only shifted superficially” in their approach to privacy since the start of the fake news inquiry, a committee chairman has said.

The “ongoing” threats to democracy will be combated by a sub-committee on disinformation which will be headed up by Damian Collins, Conservative MP for Folkestone and Hythe.

Mr Collins said the lack of action was “unacceptable” and vowed that the body, set up by the Digital, Culture, Media and Sport Committee (DCMS), would continue to apply pressure.

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It will also build on knowledge gained from the inquiry, which began in September 2017 and culminated in a final report released in February.

Mr Collins said: “As we stated at the time, our report on disinformation and fake news was not the final word on the matter.

“We believe that there’s a strong public interest in establishing the sub-committee to continue probing ongoing threats posed by disinformation to democracies, a threat that hasn’t disappeared with the end of our inquiry.

“We look forward to continuing the highly important work that we have begun.

“Since beginning our investigations, tech companies have only shifted superficially in their approach to privacy, and only for the benefit of their own PR.

“It’s unacceptable and we must keep up the pressure for them to shift their approach to ensure people and their rights are protected.”