WhatsApp has been fined 225 million euros for not being clear enough how the messaging service handles personal information. Facebook is still appealing the Irish data protection authority’s DPC decision.
According to Irish broadcaster RTE, this is the highest fine imposed by the DPC to date. It is also the second highest fine for breaching European privacy law (GDPR). A few weeks ago, the Amazon online store in Luxembourg was fined 746 million euros.
Since the GDPR regulation came into force in May 2018, privacy watchdogs in European countries have been able to take far-reaching measures. For example, they can issue fines of up to 4 percent of a company’s global revenue.
According to the DPC, WhatsApp has violated the rules on how it handles user and non-user data. The fact that this information is being shared with other parts of Facebook is also unacceptable. WhatsApp was not only fined, but also urged to comply quickly.
The Irish regulator first proposed a €50 million fine, but European privacy custodians disagreed. WhatsApp has allocated 77.5 million euros to this issue.
We do not agree with this decision, we have been transparent enough. The penalties are disproportionate. “We will appeal this decision,” a spokesperson for the News Service said.
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