DUBLIN: Ireland’s data privacy watchdog has agreed to a record 405 million euro ($402 million) fine on social network Instagram following an investigation into its handling of children’s data, a spokesman said. .
A spokesman for parent company Meta Platforms Inc (META.O) said in an emailed statement that Instagram plans to appeal the fine.
The survey, which began in 2020, focused on users of children aged 13 to 17 who were allowed to operate business accounts, which helped publish users’ phone numbers and/or email addresses.
A spokesman for the Irish Data Protection Commissioner (DPC), the main regulator of Instagram’s parent company Meta Platforms Inc (META.O), said: “We passed the final decision last Friday, which does contain a fine of 405 million euros.”
Full details of the decision will be released next week, he said.
A Meta spokesperson said Instagram updated its settings more than a year ago and has since released new features to keep teens safe and messages private.
The spokesperson said Instagram disagreed with how the fine was calculated and was carefully reviewing the decision.
The DPC regulates Facebook, Apple, Google and other tech giants because their EU headquarters are in Ireland. It has launched more than a dozen investigations into Meta companies, including Facebook and WhatsApp.
WhatsApp was fined a record 225 million euros last year for failing to comply with EU data rules in 2018.
Irish regulators completed a draft ruling on the Instagram probe in December and shared it with other EU regulators under the EU’s “one-stop” system for overseeing large multinational companies.