WhatsApp fined £193m for breaching GDPR

WhatsApp fined €225m (£193m) by the Irish data watchdog for severely breaching data privacy regulations GDPR.

The Irish Data Protection Commission has only once released a larger fine under the recently introduced GDPR regulations.

Ireland is home to the Facebook HQ, a company that acquired WhatsApp several years ago, and all action in the EU against the company goes through this arm.

WhatsApp has already made clear that they will be appealing the severity of the fine which has been applied to them.

An investigation was launched in 2018, looking into whether WhatsApp had been transparent enough regarding how information was being handled.

There were many highly technical issues discussed in the original investigation, one of said issues was regarding weather WhatsApp were transparent enough with their users regarding how their data was processed.

WhatsApp have since made lots of updates to their policies, to ensure they could not come under scrutiny for further GDPR breaches.

“WhatsApp is committed to providing a secure and private service,” said a company spokesperson. “We have worked to ensure the information we provide is transparent and comprehensive and will continue to do so. We disagree with the decision today regarding the transparency we provided to people in 2018 and the penalties are entirely disproportionate.”

The fines available to be pursued by the watchdogs can equate to up to 4% of a company’s global turnover.

Only Amazon has been hit with a fine greater than that of the one imposed on WhatsApp, €746m for defying data processing laws.

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