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Possible Tesla data protection violations under investigation by authorities

Authorities looking into possible Tesla data protection violations

Authorities looking into possible Tesla data protection violations

German data protection authorities have reportedly found indications of possible violations by Tesla, according to German newspaper Handelsblatt. The state data protection office, where Tesla’s European gigafactory is located, has cited 100GB of leaked confidential data as evidence that Tesla has failed to protect data from customers, employees, and business partners. The company faces potential GDPR violations as the regulation stipulates that companies are obliged to do so when personal data may have been leaked. The Brandenburg data protection office and Tesla have yet to comment on the report.

The leaked files contain tables of over 100k names of current and former employees, including the social security number of Elon Musk, along with private email addresses, phone numbers, and salaries. Customer information, including bank details and production secrets, are also reportedly present in abundance. The breach could violate GDPR regulations, and the matter will become serious if the evidence becomes substantial.

A lawyer for Tesla has stated that a “disgruntled former employee” has abused their service technician access to get information and the company will take legal action against the suspected ex-employee. Meanwhile, thousands of customer complaints regarding the carmaker’s driver assistance systems have been reported.

In recent months, there have been several incidents of tech companies facing GDPR violations. Facebook parent, Meta, was hit with a record 1.2 billion euro fine by the European Union privacy regulator for its handling of user data.

FAQs

What is GDPR?
GDPR is the General Data Protection Regulation, a regulation passed by the European Union in 2018 that aims to give individuals more control over their personal data and to regulate the way organizations collect, process, and store that data.

What personal data has been leaked?
The leaked data includes tables containing more than 100k names of former and current employees, customer bank details, phone numbers, and production secrets.

What are the potential consequences for Tesla?
If the violation is found to be substantial, Tesla could face fines and further legal action. Under GDPR regulations, companies must report data breaches when personal data may have been leaked.

How has Tesla responded to the allegations?
Tesla has not yet commented on the report or the allegations. However, a lawyer for the company has stated that a “disgruntled former employee” has abused their access as a service technician to retrieve confidential information.

Authorities looking into possible Tesla data protection violations
Authorities looking into possible Tesla data protection violations

Tesla under investigation for potential data privacy violations by authorities

German authorities are investigating possible data protection violations by Tesla, according to a report by Handelsblatt newspaper. The paper cites the data protection office in the German state where Tesla has its European gigafactory, which apparently has “serious indications” of violations. The report claims that Tesla has failed to protect data from customers, employees, and business partners, resulting in 100 GB of data being leaked to the paper by a whistleblower. The data protection supervisory authority in the Netherlands, where Tesla’s European headquarters is located, has reportedly been informed of the case, and Tesla has filed a preliminary report to Dutch authorities. The “Tesla Files” contained tables with over 100,000 names of former and current employees, including the social security number of CEO Elon Musk, along with private email addresses, phone numbers, salaries, bank details of customers, and secret details from production. The breach would violate the European Union’s General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR), which requires companies to report possible data leaks.

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