News

UK’s ICO OK with use of phone data for COVID-19

The UK’s privacy watchdog has said the government can legally use personal data from people’s mobile phones to track and monitor behaviour if it helps fight the spread of coronavirus. It emerged last week that the government was in talks with UK mobile phone companies to potentially use anonymous location and usage data to create […]

Privacy “plummets” with COVID-19 crisis

In South Korea, government agencies are harnessing surveillance-camera footage, smartphone location data and credit card purchase records to help trace the recent movements of coronavirus patients and establish virus transmission chains. In Lombardy, Italy, the authorities are analyzing location data transmitted by citizens’ mobile phones to determine how many people are obeying a government lockdown […]

EDPB issues statement on COVID-19

Governments, public and private organisations throughout Europe are taking measures to contain and mitigate COVID-19. This can involve the processing of different types of personal data. Andrea Jelinek, Chair of the European Data Protection Board (EDPB), said: “Data protection rules (such as GDPR) do not hinder measures taken in the fight against the coronavirus pandemic. […]

UK’s ICO will be “reasonable and pragmatic” given COVID-19

We all share the same concerns about the spread of the COVID-19 virus. The need for public bodies and health practitioners to be able to communicate directly with people when dealing with this type of health emergency has never been greater. Data protection and electronic communication laws do not stop Government, the NHS or any […]

Dutch DPA reports 80% spike in complaints

The number of complaints about a possible privacy violation sent to the Dutch Data Protection Authority (AP) increased by a massive 79 percent to 27,800 last year. The majority of complaints involved a violation of the right to privacy – the right to inspect information about yourself, or have information removed from somewhere, AD reports. […]

Google and Tinder in crosshairs of Ireland on GDPR

Ireland’s Data Protection Commission, based in Dublin, is investigating Google’s Irish subsidiary to decide whether the company meets transparency obligations under the EU’s General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) or “has a valid legal basis for processing the location data of its users,” the commission said in a statement. Google “will cooperate fully with the office […]

Hong Kong eyes GDPR-style privacy law

Hong Kong is set to follow the lead of European regulators in applying tougher penalties for data protection infractions, following a serious breach at airline Cathay Pacific in 2018. Proposed amendments to the regional government’s Personal Data (Privacy) Ordinance, which cited the GDPR, would see fines levied as a percentage of global turnover, according to […]

Press critical of Irish DPA on fines and WhatsApp delay

Data protection authorities in Europe issued fines worth a combined €410 million to organisations last year for violations but none originated in the Republic, despite it being home to many of the world’s biggest technology companies. New figures compiled by the Italian data protection body Osservatarorio di Federprivacy – which includes data from official sources […]

UK’s ICO has until March 2020 for BA and Marriott penalty notices

Further to the publication of the ICO’s notices of intention to fine British Airways and Marriott in July 2019, the ICO has recently issued a statement delaying the issuance of both GDPR fines which had originally been expected by the end of 2019. (The ICO’s initial notices of intention to fine had stated that British […]

GDPR feared to be ‘toothless’ against big tech

More than 18 months after the European Union began implementing the world’s toughest privacy law, the bloc’s ability to rein in Big Tech is increasingly in doubt amid growing frustration over a lack of enforcement actions and weak cooperation on investigations. Passed in May 2018, the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) was largely viewed as […]

Brazil fines Facebook USD 1.6 million over Cambridge Analytica case

Brazil’s Ministry of Justice said on Monday it fined U.S. tech giant Facebook Inc 6.6 million reais ($1.6 million) for improperly sharing user data. The ministry’s department of consumer protection said it had found that data from 443,000 Facebook users was improperly made available to developers of an App called “thisisyourdigitallife.” The data was being […]

Six months until serious enforcement of California’s CCPA (but not a grace period)

The California Consumer Privacy Act goes into effect January 1st, and it doesn’t look like anyone, even the state of California itself, is totally ready. Draft regulations for enforcing the law are still being finalized at the state level, and questions about specific aspects of the most sweeping privacy regulation since the European Union’s General […]