Research by the Dutch Consumers Association shows that multiple companies share customer data with Facebook without consent for more targeted advertising. Sharing such information without permission is prohibited in the Netherlands under the Data Protection Act, as confirmed by the Personal Data Authority (AP). Yet, not all companies concerned have stopped sharing data, arguing it is a common practice under companies advertising online. They claim to encrypt their data, making it impossible for Facebook to use it. According to the AP, it is not relevant whether or not the data is encrypted.