LaLiga fined $280,000 by Spain’s data protection agency

App listened in to catch matches being streamed illegally
La Liga, Piracy, Data protection, Anti-piracy, Spain, Football, Sports broadcasting

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Spain’s national data protection agency (AEPD) has slapped the country’s soccer league, LaLiga, with a $280,000 (€250,000) fine for allegedly violating EU data privacy and transparency laws. 

LaLiga’s app, used for keeping track of games and stats, used the phone’s microphone and GPS to track establishments illegally streaming soccer games, Spanish newspaper El País reported.

The app has been downloaded over 10 million times. Its terms of service tell users that by giving the app permission to access location and microphone, they are consenting to LaLiga using their phones to detect fraudulent behavior, like illegally broadcast soccer games.

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However, the Spanish data protection agency claims that the app didn’t make this clear, and has ordered LaLiga to take down the app by June 30th. The league plans to appeal the sanction, claiming that the agency doesn’t fully understand the app’s technology.

Spain’s top professional football division said in a statement that it has always complied with data protection regulations and denied breaking the law.

“LaLiga disagrees profoundly with this decision, rejects the penalty imposed as unjust, unfounded and disproportionate and considers that the AEPD has not made the necessary efforts to understand how the technology works,” it said in a statement.

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