Ireland’s data privacy regulator imposed a $277 million fine on social media giant Facebook
On Monday, Ireland’s data privacy regulator penalized social media juggernaut Facebook with 265 million euros ($277 million), raising the total amount it has fined parent company, Meta, to over 1 billion euros. The fine resulted from an investigation launched last year after it was discovered that a compiled set of personal information had been taken from Facebook and posted online between May 2018 and September 2019. Additionally, Facebook was mandated to take a number of corrective actions.
Meta claimed that it had made improvements to its systems during the time of issue, including eliminating the ability to scrape its features in this manner using phone numbers, and had fully cooperated with the investigation by Ireland’s Data Privacy Commissioner (DPC). The DPC has already fined one of Meta’s companies four times as of Monday. It is Meta’s primary privacy watchdog in the EU and has 13 open inquiries involving the social media industry.
The watchdog fined Meta’s Instagram subsidiary a record-breaking 405 million euros in September; Meta intends to appeal. The decision pertaining to the most recent fine was under review, Meta further stated in its statement on Monday. Due to the fact that the EU headquarters of these internet behemoths are in Ireland, the DPC regulates companies like Apple, Google, Twitter, Tiktok, and others. There are presently 40 open investigations into these companies, including the 13 involving Meta.
Under the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) “One Stop Shop” regime established by the EU in 2018, the regulator can levy fines of up to 4% of a company’s global revenue. The DPC stated that Facebook’s actions were among the mitigating circumstances in Monday’s judgment, which all other pertinent EU regulators had approved.
“We’ll keep going until the behavior does change,” Ireland’s Data Privacy Commissioner (DPC), Helen Dixon, told Irish national broadcaster RTE on Monday.