FRANCE - Google Fined $57 Million for European Privacy Breach

Arno Froese

France’s data protection watchdog fined Alphabet’s Google 50 million euros ($57 million) for breaching European Union online privacy rules, the biggest such penalty levied against a U.S. tech giant.

The EU’s General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR), the biggest shake-up of data privacy laws in more than two decades, came into force in May. It allows users to better control their personal data and gives regulators the power to impose fines of up to 4 percent of global revenue for violations.

Google issued a statement saying that people “expect high standards of transparency and control from us.”

“We’re deeply committed to meeting those expectations and the consent requirements of the GDPR,” it said, adding that it was examining its next steps.

The French authority, known for its stringent interpretation of privacy rules and for favoring a tough approach toward U.S. Internet companies, sets a record with this penalty, which could reverberate in Silicon Valley.

“More than just a significant amount of money, this sanction is particularly detrimental to Google as it directly challenges its business model and will, in all likelihood, require them to deeply modify their provision of services,” Sonia Cissé, Managing Associate at Linklaters, said., 21 January 2019

Arno's commentary

One senses that privacy is an immensely important issue, particularly with free-thinking French people. The EU’s General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR), established in May 2018, will most likely become the guide for the rest of the world. That’s one side of the story. The other side is that technology is racing so far ahead, that laws will be unable to keep up; much less the enforcement of such.

What we do know is what Scripture tells us: that in the end, all people globally will be registered and their data made available to the then world government. Such was the case when Jesus came for the first time to be born in Bethlehem. The law was “all the world should be taxed (registered).” When He comes again, we may assume this type of total control will then be implemented too.

Arno Froese is the executive director of Midnight Call Ministries and editor-in-chief of the acclaimed prophetic magazines Midnight Call and News From Israel. He has authored a number of well-received books, and has sponsored many prophecy conferences in the U.S., Canada, and Israel. His extensive travels have contributed to his keen insight into Bible prophecy, as he sees it from an international perspective.

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