Amazon the American multinational e-commerce giant recently was fined a total of $ 886.6 million which is approximately £ 746 million. Amazon was fined due to the processing of private data of the European Union’s citizens. The company violated the European Union’s General Data Protection and Regulation law. This happened on 30th July 2021, Friday, and was addressed by Amazon.
The General Data Protection and Regulation is a general law agreed upon by both the European Parliament and the Council in 2016 and focuses on preventing the transfer EUs citizens’ private, personal data as well as protection of the data. This law is especially enforced for many foreign companies who steal data.
The fine on Amazon was imposed by the Luxembourg National Commission for Data Protection. This fine was imposed on Amazon Europe which is initially based in Luxembourg and looks after sales the retailer makes from individual countries across the continent. On July 16 CNDP made this decision and disclosed it in their regulatory filing.
Amazon expressed in the filing that the decision taken by CNDP was not justifying and Amazon will plan on defending their own side in this matter as they don’t think that they have violated the law.
The law clearly states taking personal consent from individuals users to use their personal data. And if any company does not follow the rules they will be heavily fined for the same.
This fine is considered the biggest fine for Amazon.
Amazon confirmed in filing that they haven’t exploited the customers’ personal data and no data violation has occurred. Amazon refuses to pay the fine and plans on appealing to the authorities, that the CNDP’s claims are false and without strong evidence.
CNDP has ordered Amazon to look after its business practices and correct its unethical practices. To this Amazon’s spokesperson cleared out that maintaining customer privacy and security is their top priority and they would always abide by it.
Amazon completely disputed the claims imposed on it by CNDP and said that the interpretations made by CNDP about Amazon’s customer-relevant advertising are very irrational and without evidence and proper explanation. Even the fine imposed on them is unreasonable. CNDP cannot fine Amazon without giving a proper explanation for the same.
The initial investigation against Amazon first started in 2018 when the French privacy rights group called La Quadrature filed a complaint against Amazon. This was due to a data breach done by Amazon.
La Quadrature didn’t comment on the complaint but a member of La Quadrature, Bastien Le Querrec who is a member of the company litigation team warmly welcomed this decision, according to CNBC.
Bastien Le Querrec even said that this decision was quite out of measure but it was important. The company wants to notice whether such a decision causes a change in Amazon’s “infringing behavior”.
GDPR from its commencement has a very common rule for fining companies if they violate the laws set by the EU. This fine is decided by using the 4% principle where CNDP fines a total of 4% from the company’s global sales. This fine is quite big for us but according to Amazon, it could be less as it’s only 4 % of their annual global sales.
Amazon recently posted about their third $ 100 billion quarter in a row. Their revenue has been growing year after year by almost 27 % and their total sales revenue is approximately $ 113.08 billion.