They are also prevented from tracking the browsing history of Windows 10 users without prior consent from the user. The notice was published on Wednesday, and the company has also been ordered to ensure that users’ personal data is secure and confidential. It was discovered that data was still being transferred by Microsoft to the US as part of the ‘Safe Harbour’ agreement, but this is no longer valid in Europe. The company has been given just three months to ensure full compliance with the order.
The decision was made by the CNIL, the privacy watchdog in France, after completing an investigation earlier this year. Microsoft has replied by stating that the reason the company collects the data is to ensure the software works well for the end user.
The breaches are considered to be serious as there are more than 10 million people using Windows 10 in France. Data being collected includes information on the type of apps that users download and statistics on the amount of time being spent on each one. There is also concern that users were not given the right information on opting out of cookies, and the CNIL has risen concerns about the security of the PIN system.
Further investigations and sanctions could be imposed if Microsoft fails to meet the deadline for compliance, but with the aim of ensuring that consumers are fully informed rather than curtailing the company’s business interests.