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EU regulators fine WhatsApp for not being transparent enough with users

Ireland’s Data Protection Commission imposed the fine that was the second-largest one under EU’s privacy law.

Ireland’s Data Protection Commission (DPC) fined Facebook-owned WhatsApp 225 million euros (USD 266) for violating the European Union's General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR). This is the second-largest fine under the bloc's privacy law and it comes a month after another US tech company, Amazon, revealed that it was fined a record 746 million euros. "We disagree with the decision today regarding the transparency we provided to people in 2018 and the penalties are entirely disproportionate," a WhatsApp spokesperson told MediaNama. WhatsApp will appeal the decision, the spokesperson added. Why was WhatsApp fined? An investigation started in 2018 by DPC found that WhatsApp did not tell EU citizens enough about how their personal data is collected or used. "This includes information provided to data subjects about the processing of information between WhatsApp and other Facebook companies," DPC said. Regulators appeared to have an issue with the level of detail provided by WhatsApp in its previous privacy policy. According to the IrishTimes, the messaging platform provided only 41 percent of the prescribed information by GDPR. According to Wall Street Journal, DPC had initially proposed a fine of up to 50 million euros but after objections from other competition watchdogs of other EU countries, the dispute resolution process was triggered and a board of all EU privacy regulators voted to order DPC to levy a bigger fine. DPC is the lead regulator because WhatsApp's European headquarters is located in Dublin. Apart from the fine, WhatsApp has been given three months (reduced from 6 months that DPC initially contemplated) to…

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