The European Data Protection Board (the “EDPB”) recently adopted its Guidelines 3/2019 on processing of personal data through video devices (the “Guidelines”). Although the Guidelines provide examples of data processing for video surveillance, these examples are not exhaustive. The Guidelines aim to provide guidance on how to apply the EU General Data Protection Regulation (“GDPR”) in all potential areas of video device use.
On July 16, 2019, the European Data Protection Board (the “EDPB”) published its Annual Report for 2018 (the “Report”). The Report highlights that the EDPB (i) endorsed 16 guidelines previously adopted by the Article 29 Working Party; (ii) adopted four additional guidelines to clarify provisions of the GDPR; (iii) adopted 26 consistency opinions to guarantee the consistent application of the EU General Data Protection Regulation (“GDPR”) by the EU data protection authorities; and (iv) issued two opinions in the context of the legislative consultation process, as well as a statement on its own initiative and on the draft ePrivacy Regulation.
In addition to Facebook’s record-breaking Federal Trade Commission penalty and settlement order, on July 24, 2019, the Securities and Exchange Commission announced charges against Facebook for inadequate and misleading disclosures over its privacy practices. Facebook, without admitting or denying the SEC’s allegations, has agreed to the entry of a final judgment ordering a fine of $100 million.
As previously reported on July 12, 2019, Facebook will pay a $5 billion penalty to the Federal Trade Commission to resolve a privacy probe into whether Facebook violated a prior FTC consent decree requiring the company to better protect user privacy. The $5 billion penalty is the largest imposed on any company for violating consumers’ privacy – nearly 20 times the largest privacy or data security penalty to date.
On July 23, 2019, APEC issued a press release announcing the recent appointment of the Infocomm Media Development Authority (“IMDA”) as Singapore’s Accountability Agent for the APEC Cross-Border Privacy Rules (“CBRP”) and APEC Privacy Recognition for Processors (“PRP”). This makes Singapore the third APEC economy that has fully operationalized its participation in the CBPR system, following the United States, which has two CBPR Accountability Agents, and Japan, which has one CBPR Accountability Agent.
On July 16, 2019, the Dutch Data Protection Authority (Autoriteit Persoonsgegevens, the “Dutch DPA”), announced that it had imposed a fine of €460,000 on a Dutch hospital, HagaZiekenhuis, for insufficient security measures under Article 32 of the EU General Data Protection Regulation (“GDPR”).
On July 22, 2019, the Federal Trade Commission announced that Equifax Inc. (“Equifax”) agreed to pay at least $575 million, and potentially up to $700 million, as part of a global settlement agreement with the FTC, the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (“CFPB”), and 50 U.S. states and territories to resolve investigations into the colossal data breach the company suffered in 2017. This is the largest data breach settlement in U.S. history.
According to media reports, the Federal Trade Commission has approved a multimillion dollar fine as part of a settlement with Google related to the FTC’s investigation into YouTube’s children’s data privacy practices. The FTC found that, in violation of COPPA, Google had failed to adequately protect children under 13 who used the video-streaming service and improperly collected their data.
On July 17, 2019, the Federal Trade Commission published a notice in the Federal Register announcing an accelerated review of its Children’s Online Privacy Protection Rule (“COPPA Rule” or “Rule”), seeking feedback on the effectiveness of the 2013 amendments to the Rule, and soliciting input on whether additional changes are needed. Citing questions regarding the Rule’s application to the educational technology sector, voice-enabled connected devices, and general audience platforms that host child-directed content, the FTC indicated that it was moving up its review from a standard 10-year timeframe. The Commission vote to conduct the Rule review was unanimous, 5-0.