Irish data protection regulator fined WhatsApp 225 million euro ($266 million) on Thursday for privacy breaches after the EU privacy watchdog pressured the country to take a tougher line with a bigger penalty, Reuters reported.
However, WhatsApp disagreed with the fine saying it is “entirely disproportionate” and that it would appeal. A WhatsApp spokesperson said, “We disagree with the decision today regarding the transparency we provided to people in 2018 and the penalties are entirely disproportionate.
WhatsApp is committed to providing a secure and private service. We have worked to ensure the information we provide is transparent and comprehensive and will continue to do so.
Ireland’s Data Privacy Commissioner (DPC), the lead data privacy regulator for Facebook within the European Union said the investigation began in 2018 where it found violations in WhatsApp’s compliance with European transparency rules under GDPR.
“This includes information provided to data subjects about the processing of information between WhatsApp and other Facebook companies,” the Irish regulator said in a statement.
The fine comes weeks after Amazon.com Inc. was hit with a record 746-million-euro penalty in Luxembourg, for processing personal data in violation of the EU’s General Data Protection Regulation.
In July, a meeting of the European Data Protection Board issued a “clear instruction that required the DPC to reassess and increase its proposed fine on the basis of a number of factors contained. Following this reassessment, the DPC has imposed a fine of 225 million euros on WhatsApp.
The Irish regulator also reprimanded and ordered WhatsApp to bring its processing into compliance by taking “a range of specified remedial actions”.
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