The Data Protection Commission (DPC) has opened its third privacy investigation into tech giant Apple in the last few weeks, a spokesman for the DPC said yesterday. The DPC is Apple's main regulator in the European Union.
The inquiry is examining whether Apple has complied with the relevant provisions of the EU’sGeneral Data Protection Regulation (GDPR). It comes on foot of an access request from a customer.
The DPC has 20 investigations open into multinational technology companies whose European headquarters in Ireland put them under its jurisdiction. Facebook is under the most scrutiny, with eight individual inquiries, plus two into its WhatsApp subsidiary, and one into the Facebook-owned Instagram.
Twitter is also under three different investigations, with one each for Google, LinkedIn, and Quantcast.
Fines for violations
Under the GDPR, regulators have the power to impose fines for violations of up to 4% of a company's global revenue, or €20 million, whichever is higher.
The DPC is the national independent authority responsible for upholding the fundamental right of individuals in the EU to have their personal data protected. It is the Irish supervisory authority for the GDPR, and also has functions and powers related to other regulatory frameworks, including the Irish ePrivacy Regulations (2011) and the EU Law Enforcement Directive.
(Photo: Chief executive officer of Apple Tim Cook speaking at the 40th International Conference of Data Protection and Privacy Commissioners at the European Parliament in Brussels on 24 October 2018. Pic: EPA/EFE/STEPHANIE LECOCQ)