HDPA (Greece) - 25/2023

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HDPA - 25/2023
LogoGR.jpg
Authority: HDPA (Greece)
Jurisdiction: Greece
Relevant Law: Article 5(1) GDPR
Article 6 GDPR
Article 15(1) GDPR
Article 25(1) GDPR
Type: Complaint
Outcome: Upheld
Started: 21.01.2020
Decided: 12.06.2023
Published: 27.07.2023
Fine: 210.000 EUR
Parties: Τράπεζα Πειραιώς Α.Ε.
National Case Number/Name: 25/2023
European Case Law Identifier: n/a
Appeal: n/a
Original Language(s): Greek
Original Source: HDPA (in EL)
Initial Contributor: ANASTASIA TSERMENIDOU

The Hellenic DPA fined a bank €210,000 for mistakenly including its customers's personal data in a list of debtors and for not properly responding to an access request. The DPA also concluded that the controller did not implement sufficient organizational and technical measures according to Article 25 GDPR.

English Summary[edit | edit source]

Facts[edit | edit source]

Piraeus Bank S.A., the controller, sent the data subject a letter informing them that it had entrusted the management of loans and credit related claims to a credit management company (AFS), its wholly owned subsidiary. The letter also informed that the data subject was subject to a claim and that their personal data had been shared with AFS, which was managing the claim.

The data subject submitted an access request to the controller under Article 15 GDPR, asking for more detailed information such as the date, the means and the purpose of the transmission of their personal data, as well as the loan contract number and any other personal data.

The controller responded that the letter was sent to the data subject by mistake and asked them to disregard it as their personal data had not been shared and remained on its servers.

Dissatisfied with the response, the data subject filed a complaint with the Hellenic DPA, claiming that the controller did not provide them with sufficient information. Moreover, they argued that they did not have any loan or credit related claim with the controller and, therefore, there was no legal basis for sharing their data with AFS.

The DPA opened an investigation regarding the controller.

In the procedure, the controller stated that it had an agreement with AFS for the management of its 'portfolio' (receivables from loan granting and/or customers' debts that had became overdue, terminated or settled). The controller admitted that, due to a technical problem with its systems, letters were mistakenly sent to customers that had zero balance and should not be included in the portfolio.

Holding[edit | edit source]

After the investigation, the Hellenic DPA could not determine if the data subject's data had been transferred to AFS, but reserved itself the right to further investigate the matter.

On the other hand, the DPA found that personal data from the data subject, as well as from a large number of customers who were involved in loans with zero rest were mistakenly included in a debtors list and received personalized letters. According to the DPA, the controller had no legal basis for this personal data processing and, therefore, violated Articles 5(1)(a) and 6 GDPR.

Furthermore, the DPA held that the controller did not implement sufficient organizational and technical measures to ensure that the processing of personal data meets the legal requirements, in breach of Article 25(1) GDPR.

Finally, the DPA stated that the response to the access request was incomplete as the controller merely informed the data subject that their data remained on its servers, but did not clarify about further processing operations that were being carried out. Thus, it concluded that the controller also violated Article 15(1) GDPR.

For the above reasons, the Hellenic DPA issued a total fine of €210.000 and instruct (the controller) to satisfy the complainant's right of access.

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English Machine Translation of the Decision[edit | edit source]

The decision below is a machine translation of the Greek original. Please refer to the Greek original for more details.

Summary
The Authority found that the complained bank processed the personal data of the complainant and a large number of its customers in violation of the principle of legality and, moreover, without having taken appropriate and effective technical and organizational measures so that only the data that they are necessary to serve a specific purpose, thus violating the principles of legality of processing and data protection by design.

With the information available to date, there has been no transmission of the data of the above persons to the Loan and Credit Receivables Management Company. The Authority expressly reserves the right to exercise its powers in relation to this particular issue in the future, given that the overall audit is ongoing and not yet complete.

Finally, the Authority established the non-satisfaction of the complainant's right of access.