The Hamburg Data Protection Authority has ruled that Facebook must allow the pseudonymous use of its services following Facebook’s requirement for users to use their real name and provide a copy of their identity card.

Johannes Caspar, the Hamburg Commissioner for Data Protection, concluded that Facebook’s behaviour had breached German telemedia and identity card requirements. Equally, Caspar highlighted that as a result of Facebook conducting its business in Germany, it would have to comply with German law even though its company’s headquarters are based in Ireland.

Hamburg Data Protection Authority Press Release (PDF) (in German)