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EU Regulator Slaps Amazon With Record-Breaking Fine For How It Uses Customer Data

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An EU privacy regulator hit Amazon with an $887 million fine for violating laws related to the processing of personal data.

The Luxembourg agency National Commission for Data Protection (CNPD) issued the fine, imposed July 16 and revealed Friday, ruling that Amazon’s processing of personal data in relation to its advertising practices was in violation of the EU General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR), according to Amazon’s 10-Q SEC filing. The fine is the largest ever issued under the GDPR, The Wall Street Journal reported.

The agency also ordered Amazon to revise some of its business practices, though the company did not specify which.

“We strongly disagree with the CNPD’s ruling, and we intend to appeal,” an Amazon spokesperson told the Daily Caller News Foundation. “The decision relating to how we show customers relevant advertising relies on subjective and untested interpretations of European privacy law, and the proposed fine is entirely out of proportion with even that interpretation.”

The spokesperson did not comment on the particular violations for which the fine was imposed.

CNPD confirmed that it issued the decision but declined to offer further comment due to Luxembourg law prohibiting the agency from discussing individual cases, a CNPD spokesperson told the Daily Caller News Foundation.

The fine is the latest in a series of penalties imposed by European regulators on American tech companies.

Google was fined roughly $590 million by France’s Competition Authority earlier this month for failing to comply with an EU copyright law mandating the company pay news publishers for their content. The tech giant had settled an antitrust case for roughly $270 million with the same regulatory agency earlier this month.

U.S. tech conglomerate Qualcomm was fined $1 billion in January 2018 for its anti-competitive collusion with Apple, while the European Commission fined Google $5 billion in July 2018 for antitrust violations.

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