A Canadian privacy group has filed a complaint against the social networking site Facebook accusing it of violating privacy laws.

The Canadian Internet Policy and Public Interest Clinic has listed 22 separate breaches of privacy law in its country.

Clinic Director Phillipa Lawson told the BBC that, with over 7 million users in Canada, “Facebook needs to be held publicly accountable”.

Facebook rejects the charge, claiming some of the highest standards around.

The basis of the complaint, filed with the Office of the Privacy Commissioner, states that Facebook collects sensitive information about its users and shares it without their permission.

It goes on to say that the company does not alert users about how that information is being used and does not adequately destroy user data after accounts are closed.

The 35-page action was lodged after students at the clinic analysed the company’s policies and practices as part of a course this past winter and identified specific practices that appear to violate the Canadian Personal Information Protection and Electronic Documents Act (Pipeda).