May 30, 2023 7:50 am


The information protection watchdog for the Netherlands stated on Friday it was conscious of achievable Tesla information protection breaches, but it was as well early for additional comment.

Germany’s Handelsblatt reported on Thursday that Elon Musk’s Tesla had allegedly failed to adequately defend information from buyers, staff and business enterprise partners, citing one hundred gigabytes of confidential information leaked by a whistleblower.

“We are conscious of the Handelsblatt story and we are hunting into it,” stated a spokesperson for the AP information watchdog in the Netherlands, exactly where Tesla’s European headquarters is situated.

They declined all comment on no matter if the agency may well launch or have launched an investigation, citing policy. The Dutch agency was informed by its counterpart in the German state of Brandenberg.

Handelsblatt stated Tesla notified the Dutch authorities about the breach, but the AP spokesperson stated they have been not conscious if the corporation had created any representations to the agency.

Tesla was not promptly out there for comment on Friday on the Handelsblatt report, which stated consumer information could be located “in abundance” in a information set labelled “Tesla Files”.

The information protection workplace in Brandenburg, which is dwelling to Tesla’s European gigafactory, described the information leak as “massive”.

“I can not bear in mind such a scale,” Brandenburg information protection officer Dagmar Hartge stated, adding that the case had been handed to the Dutch authorities who would be accountable if the allegations led to an enforcement action.

The Dutch authorities has many weeks to determine no matter if to deal with the case as aspect of a European process, she added.

The files include things like tables containing extra than one hundred,000 names of former and existing staff, which includes the social safety quantity of Tesla CEO Musk, along with private e-mail addresses, telephone numbers, salaries of staff, bank particulars of buyers and secret particulars from production, Handelsblatt reported.

The breach would violate the GDPR, it stated.

If such a violation was proved, Tesla could be fined up to four% of its annual sales, which could be three.26 billion euros.

German union IG Metall stated the revelations have been “disturbing” and known as on Tesla to inform staff about all information protection violations and market a culture in which employees could raise troubles and grievances openly and without the need of worry.

“These revelations … match with the image that we have gained in just below two years,” stated Dirk Schulze, IG Metall incoming district manager for Berlin, Brandenburg and Saxony.

Handelsblatt quoted a lawyer for Tesla as saying a “disgruntled former employee” had abused their access as a service technician, adding that the corporation would take legal action against the person it suspected of the leak.

Citing the leaked files, the newspaper reported about thousands of consumer complaints with regards to the carmaker’s driver help systems with about four,000 complaints on sudden acceleration or phantom braking.

Final month, a Reuters report showed that groups of Tesla staff privately shared by means of an internal messaging method often extremely invasive videos and photos recorded by customers’ car or truck cameras in between 2019 and 2022.

This week, Facebook parent Meta was hit with a record 1.two billion euro ($1.three billion) fine by its lead European Union privacy regulator more than its handling of user info and offered 5 months to quit transferring user information to the U.S.