EU Slaps Amazon with Record $887 Million Fine

Issue 82

Luxembourg’s National Commission for Data Protection (CNPD) has hit Amazon with a record-breaking €746 million ($887 million) GDPR fine over the way it uses customer data for targeted advertising purposes.

Amazon disclosed the ruling in an SEC filing on Friday in which it predictably slammed the decision as baseless and added that it intended to defend itself “vigorously in this matter.”
“Maintaining the security of our customers’ information and their trust are top priorities,” an Amazon spokesperson said in a statement. “There has been no data breach, and no customer data has been exposed to any third party. These facts are undisputed.

“We strongly disagree with the CNPD’s ruling, and we intend to appeal. The decision relating to how we show customers relevant advertising relies on subjective and untested interpretations of European privacy law, and the proposed fine is entirely out of proportion with even that interpretation.”

The penalty is the result of a 2018 complaint by French privacy rights group La Quadrature du Net, a group that claims to represent the interests of thousands of Europeans to ensure their data isn’t used by Big Tech companies to manipulate their behavior for political or commercial purposes. The complaint also targets Apple, Facebook, Google, and LinkedIn and was filed on behalf of more than 10,000 customers, alleging that Amazon manipulates customers for commercial means by choosing what advertising and information they receive.

Source: Bloomberg