The State Commissioner for Data Protection (LfD) Lower Saxony has imposed a fine of 1.1 million euros on Volkswagen Aktiengesellschaft in accordance with Article 83 of the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR). The reason is data protection violations in connection with the use of a service provider for research trips for a driver assistance system to avoid traffic accidents.
The vehicle with cameras attached to it was used to test and train the functionality of a driver assistance system to avoid traffic accidents. The traffic situation around the vehicle was recorded, among other things for error analysis.
The vehicle was missing signs with a camera symbol and the other mandatory information like who is carrying out the processing, for what purpose and how long the data will be stored as required by GDPR article 13. Investigation also revealed that Volkswagen had not concluded an order processing contract with the company that carried out the journeys. This would have been required under Article 28 GDPR. Furthermore, no data protection impact assessment according to Article 35 GDPR was carried out, with which possible risks and their containment must be assessed before such processing begins.