European Union slaps Meta with record fine over data breach

Meta, owner of Facebook, has been fined a record €1.2 billion by the European Union for transferring EU user data to the United States.

The Irish Data Protection Commission (DPC), which acts on behalf of the European Union, said the European Data Protection Board (EDPB) had ordered it to collect “an administrative fine in the amount of €1.2 billion “.

The DPC has been investigating Meta Ireland’s transfer of personal data from the EU to the United States since 2020.

It found that Meta, which has its European headquarters in Dublin, failed to “address the risks to the fundamental rights and freedoms of data subjects” that were identified in a previous ruling by the Court of Justice of the European Union (CJEU).

In response, Meta said it was “disappointed to have been singled out” and the ruling was “flawed, unjustified and sets a dangerous precedent for the countless other companies”.

“We intend to appeal both the decision’s substance and its orders including the fine, and will seek a stay through the courts to pause the implementation deadlines,” Meta president of global affairs Nick Clegg and chief legal officer Jennifer Newstead said in a blog post.

“There is no immediate disruption to Facebook in Europe,” they added.

Meta said it hopes to see the US and EU adopt a new legal framework for the use of personal data in the coming months, following an agreement in principle last year, which could allow it to continue its data transfer practices.

It is the fourth fine in six months that EU regulators have slapped on Meta over data breaches by its Instagram, WhatsApp and Facebook services.

Monaco Life with AFP. Photo by Dima Solomon on Unsplash


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