Dublin (dpa) – Ireland’s parent company Meta will have to pay a €265 million fine after publishing the personal data of 533 million Facebook users. Fines for meta in the EU state add up to 910 million euros in the last 14 months.
Ireland’s data protection regulator DPC said on Monday that it launched an investigation in April 2021 after names, phone numbers and email addresses were published on a hackers’ forum. The data protection authorities of other EU members cooperated with the Irish authority and agreed with their decision.
Facebook will review the ruling
Facebook said it would reconsider the ruling. Criminals used to scrape (scrap) publicly available data online before September 2019. Meanwhile, Facebook’s systems have not been hacked.
This is the fourth time since September 2021 that the Irish authority has imposed a heavy fine on Meta. The subsidiary WhatsApp then had to pay 225 million euros for violating data protection laws. In March 2022, the parent company was also fined 17 million euros for data protection violations. In September, the DPC fined Instagram €405 million for serious violations of children’s privacy laws.
Meta appealed the Instagram and WhatsApp decisions. It is up to the judges to decide. A verdict is seen as a precedent for future investigations into data breaches. International tech groups such as Meta are a major employer in Ireland. Hundreds of jobs are at risk there after the network giant decided to cut several jobs worldwide.
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