Google and Meta Receive Record Fine for Privacy Violation

The two companies were under investigation for collecting user data without permission.

Google and Meta Receive Record Fine for Privacy Violation

Photo: Google Korea.  Credit: 2RabbitDesign.

On September 14, the Personal Information Protection Commission (PIPC) 개인정보보호위원회 fined Google KRW 69.2b (USD 49.9m) and Meta KRW 30.8b (USD 22.2m) for violating regulations on handling personal information. PIPC is a government body under the Office of the Prime Minister 국무총리실, established in 2011 to handle the treatment of personal information on the internet and in finance. The fines are the largest issued by PIPC to date.

PIPC found that since 2016, Google and Meta had collected personal data about their users’ behavior outside of their own sites, and used the data without permission to show personalized ads to users. Although Google and Meta made the data collection policy available for the users, the policy was buried in a wall of text or under the fold with a hyperlink that said “See more.” Both Google and Meta said they would appeal the fine via an administrative lawsuit.

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