The Italian Personal Data Protection Guarantor has imposed the payment of a fine to Vodafone for an amount of more than 12 million and 250 thousand euros. The reason for the sanction is having illegally processed the personal data of millions of users in the country. The amount is added to the more than 7,000 million euros in penalties to various companies for breaching the GDPR that have accumulated for years.
In addition to facing the payment of the fine, Vodafone must adopt various measures imposed by the Authority to comply with both national and European legislation on data protection. The Guarantor’s decision arrives after hundreds of complaints from users, with complaints that Vodafone made continuous unwanted telephone contacts to promote the company’s services.
Vodafone will have to face the payment of more than 12 million euros in Italy
The penalty amounts to an exact amount of 12,251,601 euros, which Vodafone will have to face. In addition to said payment, the Privacy Guarantor has ordered the company « to introduce systems that allow proving that the data processing for telemarketing purposes is carried out in compliance with the provisions of the consent. » As indicated by the Authority, the breach of the law has been verified both at the level of consent by the users and that of the fundamental principles of responsibility of the European Union.
The Guarantor affirms that Vodafone used fictitious numbers and not registered in the Registry of Communications Operators to make telephone contacts in an abusive way
The investigation carried out reports on an abusive telemarketing strategy, in which fictitious numbers and numbers not registered in the Registry of Communications Operators (Roc) were used to make said telephone contacts. In the same way, Infringements regarding the protection of personal data have been detected, having used lists of contact names acquired through external providers. In other words, the numbers of third parties would have been obtained and transferred through Vodafone business partners, without their consent.
The sanction focuses on the bad practices of abusive telemarketing carried out by Vodafone in Italy, both due to the lack of consent of the users to be included in its database and because of the creation of unregistered numbers to carry out the calls. The Guarantor has prohibited Vodafone « any subsequent processing of data for promotional or commercial purposes carried out through the acquisition of lists of personal data from third parties », as well as to prove in court « that the contracts are only activated as a result of the promotional calls made by its commercial network, through numbers registered and registered in the Roc. «
From Xataka Móvil we have contacted Vodafone waiting to expand this information with its official position, and we will update this article in case of receiving a response.
Vodafone fined in Italy: more than 12 million euros fine for telemarketing without consent