Artificial Intelligence

France punishes Google and Facebook millions of dollars for tracking consent violations.

France punishes Google and Facebook millions of dollars for tracking consent violations.

On Thursday, French regulators penalized Google and Facebook a combined sum of more than 200 million euros ($226 million) for not making it as simple to opt out of online tracking as it is to accept it.

According to the CNIL data privacy authority, while the US web giants gave French users a single button to accept cookies immediately, there was no equally simple way for them to decline since “several clicks are necessary to refuse all cookies.”

France punishes Google and Facebook millions of dollars for tracking consent violations.

On Thursday, French regulators penalized Google and Facebook a combined sum of more than 200 million euros ($226 million) for not making it as simple to opt out of online tracking as it is to accept it.

According to the CNIL data privacy authority, while the US web giants gave French users a single button to accept cookies immediately, there was no equally simple way for them to decline since “several clicks are necessary to refuse all cookies.”

Google was fined 150 million euros ($170 million) while Facebook was fined 60 million euros ($68 million) by the French regulator. It also threatened daily fines of 100,000 euros if users in France do not make it easier to refuse cookies within three months.

Facebook, which has been renamed Meta, has stated that it is studying the judgment and that it is dedicated to cooperating with authorities.

“We continue to build and improve our cookie consent controls to give people more control over their data, including a new settings menu on Facebook and Instagram where people can return and alter their preferences at any time,” the firm stated.

“People trust us to respect their right to privacy and keep them secure,” Google stated. In light of this ruling, we recognize our obligation to safeguard that trust and have committed to further adjustments and active collaboration with the CNIL.”

Because cookies may be used to track users around the internet, they have long been a source of privacy issues. They can be used to help recall a user’s website log-in information or, more controversially, to track a user’s web browsing history in order to target tailored adverts.

 

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