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Data Protection Commission launches investigation into Google Ireland

Google said it will “engage fully” with the investigation.

Image: Shutterstock/Sundry Photography

THE DATA PROTECTION Commission (DPC) has launched a statutory inquiry into Google Ireland’s processing of personal data. 

The investigation is in relation to Google’s online Ad Exchange. 

The Commission said the investigation arose from its ongoing examination of data protection compliance in the area of personalised online advertising. 

It also received a number of submissions on the matter, including those made by Dr Johnny Ryan, chief policy officer at Brave, a private web browser. 

“The purpose of the inquiry is to establish whether processing of personal data carried out at each stage of an advertising transaction is in compliance with the relevant provisions of the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR),” the Commission said in a statement.

“The GDPR principles of transparency and data minimisation, as well as Google’s retention practices, will also be examined.”

In a statement to TheJournal.ie, a Google spokesperson said: “We will engage fully with the DPC’s investigation and welcome the opportunity for further clarification of Europe’s data protection rules for real-time bidding.

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“Authorised buyers using our systems are subject to stringent policies and standards.”

Since 25 May last year, the punishment for companies in breach of GDPR is a maximum fine of €20 million or up to 4% of their turnover for the previous year, whichever is higher.

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