September 30, 2023

Google has been fined by French data privacy watchdog regulators over cookies handling

France’s Commission Nationale de Informatique et des Libertés (CNIL) – the country’s regulatory body in charge of personal data privacy, said it had fined US technology company Microsoft €60 million over its use of advertising cookies.

Largest fine by the watchdog so far this year, the CNIL said Microsoft’s search engine Bing had not set up a simple system allowing users to refuse cookies in the same manner they can accept them.

CNIL has justified the penalty because of the profits the company made from advertising profits indirectly generated from the data collected via cookies, small data files that track online browsing.

Microsoft was given three months to rectify the issue, with a potential further penalty of €60,000 per day overdue.

Last year, the CNIL said it would carry out a year of checks against sites, not following the rules on using web cookies. Google and Facebook were sanctioned last year by the CNIL with fines of €150 million and €60 million for similar breaches.

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