Both Google and Facebook received hefty fines from regulators in France for the way each company manages tracking consent.
NBC News reports that the two tech giants were fined more than 200 million euros ($226 million US) over its use of tracking cookies under France’s new laws protecting personal data.
CNIL, the data protection authority for France, demanded they provide internet users located in France with a means of refusing cookies as simple as the existing means of accepting them in order to guarantee their “freedom of consent” within three months.
CNIL made it clear that refusing to do so will come with the possibility of an additional daily fine of 100,000 euros ($113 million US).
The French data protection authority found in its investigation that the process was tedious for consumers to decline all cookies, requiring multiple clicks to do so. Accepting them, on the other hand, requires only one click.
Cookies are files that websites create when you visit them, saving browsing information that allows users to stay signed into certain networks, for instance.
Google was hit with a 150 million euro fine ($170 million US), while Facebook endured a 60 million euro fine ($68 million US ).
The two companies have responded to the fines issued to them.
“Our cookie consent controls provide people with greater control over their data, including a new settings menu on Facebook and Instagram where people can revisit and manage their decisions at any time, and we continue to develop and improve these controls,” Facebook, renamed as Meta, said in a statement.
Google declared in a release that “people trust us to respect their right to privacy and keep them safe. We understand our responsibility to protect that trust and are committing to further changes and active work with the CNIL in light of this decision.”