Facebook and Netflix have been slapped with huge fines in Korea for collecting and using personal information such as facial recognition data without consent.

The Personal Information Protection Commission on Wednesday ordered Facebook to stop collecting, storing, and using biometric information of users without consent and fined it W6.44 billion (US$1=W1,168).

Facebook was fined an additional W26 million for illegally collecting other personal information such as resident registration numbers.

According to the commission, Facebook quantified and stored facial features of users based on photos and videos they uploaded on their accounts from April 2018 to September 2019. When one user uploaded a photo that includes the face of another user, the name of the latter would automatically appear.

In just one year, Facebook has now amassed fines of W13 billion. In November last year, it was fined W6.7 billion for illegally handing over personal information of over 3.3 million users to other businesses for seven years.

The commission also fined Netflix W220 million and ordered it to stop collecting personal information without consent before users register with the streaming platform.

The fines are the second largest ever levied in Korea for violation of personal information.

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