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German court ruled that protection of the whistle-blower confidentiality does not generally override the data subject access right

A mid-level German employment court recently had to consider the scope of subject access requests under the EU General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) in the context of compliance and whistle-blowing regimes.

The Regional Labour Court ( Landesarbeitsgericht ) of Stuttgart decided that an employer was required not only to provide an employee with the records containing performance and behavioural data, but also to disclose information regarding internal investigations.

Source: German court ruled that protection of the whistle-blower confidentiality does not generally override the data subject access right

German Authorities Issue 41 GDPR Fines

A survey by Handelsblatt shows that 41 fines have been issued by German privacy authorities through mid-January of this year, according to an analysis by Mondaq.

The highest fine has been €80,000 — for an entity that allowed health-related data to be publicly seen, the report continues. In addition, a €20,000 penalty was imposed on the chat portal Knuddels.de by the State Data Protection and Freedom of Information Officer for Baden-Württemberg.

Source: German Authorities Issue 41 GDPR Fines: Report 02/25/2019

Bavarian Data Protection Authority announces possible fines after website search

At the beginning of February, the Bavarian Data Protection Authority (DPA) participated in the Safer Internet Day (SID) 2019 and searched 40 websites of large companies based in Bavaria.

The DPA reviewed cyber security and user tracking practices with the finding that in the DPA’s view none of the 40 companies provided for GDPR-compliant practices on their websites. As a result, the DPA announced it is considering fines under the GDPR.

Source: Germany: Bavarian Data Protection Authority announces possible fines after sobering result of website search

German Authorities Issue 41 GDPR Fines

41 fines have been issued by German privacy authorities through mid-January of this year.

The fines are low compared to the EUR50 million meted out to Google by French authorities. The highest fine has been €80,000 – for an entity that allowed health-related data to be publicly seen. But this is an indication  that companies must maintain adequate data protection policies and practices.

Source: German Authorities Issue 41 GDPR Fines: Report 02/25/2019

Berlin court rules against Apple data protection guidelines

The Court of Appeal in Berlin has ruled that the data protection guidelines used by Apple in 2011 were partially inadequate. The ruling came in a lawsuit filed by the Federation of German Consumer Organizations (VZBV) against Apple Sales International, which operated the online Apple Store in Germany until 2012.

Source: Berlin court rules against Apple data protection guidelines – Telecompaper

Increasing Fines Expected from German DPAs

In Germany, DPAs are investigating a broad range of non-compliance issues and showing a tendency toward increasing their enforcement activities, to the point that we expect an announcement of increasing GDPR sanctions and fines in Germany in the near future.

Source: GDPR Enforcement Update: Increasing Fines Expected from German DPAs

Facebook to appeal German data decision

Facebook has said it will appeal a decision by Germany’s main competition authority that serves to restrict its collection and aggregation of personal data.

Facebook said the German regulator had confused the company’s “popularity” with the concept of being ‘dominant’ in the market for the purposes of competition law.

Source: Facebook to appeal German data decision

German Regulator Says Facebook Can’t Use Data From Instagram and WhatsApp

Facebook “was able to build a unique database for each individual user and thus to gain market power,” says Andreas Mundt of Germany’s Federal Cartel Office.

Germany’s antitrust agency is hitting Facebook with “far-reaching restrictions” on the social media network’s practice of merging its users’ data that was gleaned from WhatsApp, Instagram and millions of third-party websites and apps. The decision can be appealed; if it stands, it would force Facebook to add more ways for its users to protect their privacy.

Source: German Regulator Says Facebook Can’t Use Data From Instagram, WhatsApp : NPR

Small business in Germany hit with €5,000 GDPR fine

A small business in Germany has been issued with a €5,000 fine for inadequate data processing standards, after misplacing one of its contracts, heise online reports.

The problem was identified after a request for personal data was made to the German regulator, in a case that is one of few to result in a fine following the introduction of the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) on May 25th 2018.

Source: Small business in Germany hit with €5,000 GDPR fine

Germany may ban Facebook from third-party data sharing

Germany’s Federal Cartel Office intends to ban Facebook from collecting user data from third parties. This will also prohibit data sharing between WhatsApp and Instagram, which Facebook own.

Germany is concerned that Facebook users didn’t know they agreed to be tracked across the internet when they signed up for the firm’s offerings. If this sticks, it’s a serious problem for its ad-targeting strategy.

Full article: Facebook’s Privacy Problems Get Real in Germany – The Washington Post

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