On Wednesday, South Korea imposed tens of millions of dollars in fines on Alphabet’s Google and Meta Platforms for privacy law violations.
The Personal Information Protection Commission imposed fines on Google for $50 million (69.2 billion won and Meta for $22 million (30.8 billion won).
The privacy panel said Google and Meta did not notify users of the data they collected. They used it for other companies’ behavioral details to pressure interests for customized advertisements.
A Meta spokesperson said, “While we respect the commission’s decision, we are confident that we work with our clients in a legally compliant way that meets the processes required by local regulations. We disagree with the commission’s decision and will be open to all options, including seeking a ruling from the court.”
“We disagree with the PIPC’s findings and will review the full written decision once it’s shared with us. We’ve always demonstrated our commitment to making ongoing updates that give users control and transparency while providing the most helpful products possible. We remain committed to engaging with the PIPC to protect the privacy of South Korean users,” a Google spokesperson said.
According to the country’s watchdog, this is an enormous penalty paid in South Korea for violating personal information protection laws and the country’s first sanction about collecting and using behavioral information on online customized advertising platforms.