Google Fined $204,200 Penalty by French Agency in Data Privacy Case
The French privacy agency CNIL has implemented a $204,200 fine against Google for failing to comply with French data privacy laws.Google has been hit with a $204,200 fine by France's National Commission for Computing and Civil Liberties (CNIL) in connection with changes Google made to its data policies in 2012 that continue to be in conflict with the French Data Protection Act. The fine, which is the highest financial penalty assessed so far by the French data protection agency, was announced Jan. 8 by the CNIL. The CNIL's decision relates to Google's move back in March 2012 to merge many of the company's privacy policies into one over-arching policy for some 60 Google services, including Google Search, YouTube, Gmail, Picasa, Google Drive, Google Docs and Google Maps, according the CNIL announcement. "Nearly all Internet users in France are impacted by this decision due to the number of services concerned," the agency said. The CNIL action to fine Google was taken because Google "does not sufficiently inform its users of the conditions in which their personal data are processed, nor of the purposes of this processing," the report continued. "They may therefore neither understand the purposes for which their data are collected, which are not specific as the law requires, nor the ambit of the data collected through the different services concerned. Consequently, they are not able to exercise their rights, in particular their right of access, objection or deletion."
The CNIL statement also said that the fine was implemented because Google "does not comply with its obligation to obtain user consent prior to the storage of cookies on their terminals," and that the company "fails to define retention periods applicable to the data which it processes."