DPAH Fines H&M €35.3 Million for Illegal Surveillance

Several hundred employed personnel working for Hennes & Mauritz AB (H&M Clothing) had their digital profiles illegally surveyed by international corporations. Excessive information was located by the “Data Protection Authority of Hamburg”. Records of employed personnel’s religious beliefs, extended family, and respective illnesses were documented against the will of several hundred employees. H&M was charged under the “General Data Protection Regulation of Europe” at €35.3 Million.

Hennes & Mauritz AB took full accountability of their illegal actions, confirming that employees will receive compensation for the crimes committed against them. H&M being fined €35.3 Million marks the 2nd large fines under the European Union’s GDPR Legislation. France’s CNIL issued a €50 Million fine onto Google for breaching consumer data. Largescale corporations worldwide are receiving backlash from international government, with the realization that these companies have collected the data of billions illegally & without a proper warrant.

Privacy Violations from H&M Clothing include the following:

  • Comprising staff surveys.
  • Details regarding holiday plans.
  • The demand for an illness diagnosis.
  • Information on medical symptoms.
  • Friendship access on employee’s social media.

Details regarding them several hundred employed personnel targeted in the illegal surveillance, shows that H&M Managers working under the Corporate Division were illegally requesting information that goes beyond obligatory data. DPAH clarified that throughout their investigation, it became notified that H&M Managers in specific locations were requesting data on family issues & religious beliefs. Exceptional cases also saw Managers contacting female or male staff with sexually targeted discussions.

The DPAH mentioned that Hennes & Mauritz AB – Corporate Division, showed despicable disregard for the allegations when first approached. The DPAH Head of Operations clarified that the €35.3 Million fine is justified, with Johannes Caspar hoping that it’ll evoke fear into other companies implementing similar tactics.

No apologies were made by Hennes & Mauritz Clothing, sentiments seemingly being unreserved & lacking on genuine sympathies. All that H&M Clothing could state was that all employed personnel at affected service centres would receive financial compensation. When questioned on their lack of care, H&M Clothing responded by saying forceful measures will be taken against Q3/Q4 shortcomings. This is threatening for affected employed personnel, who’ll likely lose their jobs.