France fines Yahoo €10million over cookie abuses

AFP - [email protected]
France fines Yahoo €10million over cookie abuses
CNIL headquarters in Paris. (Photo by Eric PIERMONT / AFP)

France's data protection watchdog has fined web services provider Yahoo €10 million for not respecting users' refusals of internet-tracking "cookies" or implying they would lose access to email accounts if they did.


The fine imposed in December, came after the Commission nationale de l'informatique et des libertés (CNIL) received complaints and carried out investigations in October 2020 and June 2021.

CNIL, an independent French administrative regulatory body whose mission is to ensure that data privacy law is applied to the collection, storage, and use of personal data, found that visitors to the main site who clicked on a button to reject cookies nonetheless ended up with around 20 of the digital trackers deposited for advertising purposes.

In addition, Yahoo Mail users who attempted to withdraw consent for cookies were warned they would no longer have access to messaging or other Yahoo services.

"To determine the amount of the fine, the restricted committee took into account the fact that the company did not respect the choice of Internet users regarding cookies and that it put in place measures to dissuade them from withdrawing their consent to the deposit of cookies," the CNIL said.


Since the advent of the EU's general data protection regulation (GDPR) in 2018, internet companies have faced stricter rules on obtaining consent from users on how their personal information is used.

France has rapped companies including Google, Meta, Amazon, Microsoft, Apple and TikTok for breaches, for total fines of nearly €400 million.


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