UK has potentially highest GDPR fine total in Europe, at nearly £263m

  • The UK has been financially penalised with potential GDPR fines more harshly than any other nation, according to research by PC recycling company Computer Disposals Limited.

    To date the UK’s highest - albeit unfinalised - fine total is €315,310,200 (over £262m), which is over €264m more than France who comes in second.

    Computer Disposals Ltd claimed to have recently analysed data around every GDPR fine to date, and found that the UK has only been hit with three fines to garner this amount.

    The high-profile cases of Marriott International and British Airways though brought a combined total of nearly £300m (over €314m) with pharmacy firm Doorstep Dispensaree Ltd. (Pharmacy)  acquiring a €320,000 fine in December 2019 for “insufficient technical and organisational measures to ensure information security.”

    However, data privacy website Privacy Affairs pointed out that these fines are not final yet. One of its partners, Joe Robinson told Sync NI: "The main problem with these particular cases is that when the ICO (Information Commissioner's Office) issues a "notice of intent" to issue a fine, it is not the same as actually issuing the fine itself.

    "The cases have to go through courts and with companies this large facing fines as serious (and potentially damaging for their reputations) as these, they tend to put a lot of resources into fighting in court and at least dragging them out for as long as possible to increase the budget required from the plaintiff."

    He said that currently the largest GDPR fine in Europe to date that has actually been given was to Google Inc. in France for €50m on 21 January 2019.

    The Privacy Affairs GDPR fines tracker claims it is accurate and provides better clarification as it is updated on a daily basis and derives from official government sources. It also adds that the smallest GDPR fine issued to date was for €90 to a Hungarian hospital on 18 November 18 , 2019.

    RELATED: Marriott International and British Airways facing fines of over £280m- do you take data seriously?

    It should be noted that the Enforcement Tracker website by which Computer Disposals Ltd attained data, and the Privacy Affairs tracker both stated that although they keep their lists as up-to-date as possible, it can never be complete “since not all fines are made public”.

    About the author

    An article that is attributed to Sync NI Team has either involved multiple authors, written by a contributor or the main body of content is from a press release.

    Got a news-related tip you’d like to see covered on Sync NI? Email the editorial team for our consideration.

Share this story