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Netherlands: SDBN files complaint against Amazon for unlawful processing of personal data

On October 18, 2023, the Netherlands Data Protection Foundation (SDBN) announced that it had initiated legal proceedings against Amazon.com, Inc. (Amazon) at the Rotterdam Court on the same day. In particular, the SDBN stated that on June 27, 2023, the SDBN held Amazon accountable for breaches of fundamental rights, specifically privacy, data protection, and consumer law, of Amazon's Dutch account holders and demanded an immediate cessation. The SDBN further specified that failing discussions to reach a resolution with Amazon, the SDBN initiated the class action against Amazon on behalf of over 5 million Dutch account holders of Amazon.

More specifically, the SDBN stated, among other things, that Amazon's activities are contrary to the principles of the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) as it collects large amounts of personal data without a legitimate basis and without informed consent from its account holders. According to the SDBN, when a user requests access to their processed personal data, Amazon conceals large amounts of data. Moreover, the SDBN stated that Amazon transmits personal data to the US without implementing the mandatory safeguards.

Additionally, the SDBN noted that Amazon monitors the online activities of account holders beyond its own websites, frequently without explicit consent. The SDBN further added that Amazon accumulates a large volume of sensitive personal information, which is incorporated into the profiles of its account holders and subsequently used for the purpose of selling online advertising space. Finally, the SDBN stated that Amazon has demonstrated an inability to maintain the security of the personal data it handles, resulting in several significant cyberattacks and data breaches in recent years.

You can read the press release here