Blogs

Google Fined for French Privacy Law Violation

01.21.14

In 2012 Google consolidated more than 60 privacy policies into 1 which led to complaints that the new privacy policy breached French laws and has now resulted in a fine of $205,000 (€150 000). French National Commission on Computing and Liberty (CNIL) issued the fine on January 8, 2014 which included the following complaints about the single privacy policy which CNIL asserts was contrary to “several legal requirements”:

  • The company does not sufficiently inform its users of the conditions in which their personal data are processed, nor of the purposes of this processing. 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 company does not comply with its obligation to obtain user consent prior to the storage of cookies on their terminals.
  • It fails to define retention periods applicable to the data which it processes.
  • Finally, it permits itself to combine all the data it collects about its users across all of its services without any legal basis.

Computerworld reported that by filing the appeal of the fine Google did not have to explain the fine on the French homepage, and regarding the fine:

…in the face of Google’s continued refusal to change the policy, CNIL imposed the maximum fine within its powers, just over 0.01% of Google’s annual revenue in France, according to a study by VRDCI, a French search optimization agency. If Google continues to offend, CNIL could impose a second fine.

Google seems committed to the single privacy policy in France, but the fine and bad press does not portend well for Google.

The publications contained in this site do not constitute legal advice. Legal advice can only be given with knowledge of the client's specific facts. By putting these publications on our website we do not intend to create a lawyer-client relationship with the user. Materials may not reflect the most current legal developments, verdicts or settlements. This information should in no way be taken as an indication of future results.

Search Tips:

You may use the wildcard symbol (*) as a root expander.  A search for "anti*" will find not only "anti", but also "anti-trust", "antique", etc.

Entering two terms together in a search field will behave as though an "OR" is being used.  For example, entering "Antique Motorcars" as a Client Name search will find results with either word in the Client Name.

Operators

AND and OR may be used in a search.  Note: they must be capitalized, e.g., "Project AND Finance." 

The + and - sign operators may be used.  The + sign indicates that the term immediately following is required, while the - sign indicates to omit results that contain that term. E.g., "+real -estate" says results must have "real" but not "estate".

To perform an exact phrase search, surround your search phrase with quotation marks.  For example, "Project Finance".

Searches are not case sensitive.

back to top