Dutch Watchdog Looks Into Tesla For Data Breaches

The Dutch data protection watchdog has acknowledged potential data protection violations by Tesla, but it is too early to determine if an investigation will be initiated.

According to a report by Handelsblatt in Germany, Tesla, led by Elon Musk, has been accused of not sufficiently safeguarding confidential data belonging to customers, employees, and business associates. The report cites a whistleblower who leaked 100 gigabytes of such information.

“We are aware of the Handelsblatt story and we are looking into it,” said a spokesperson for the AP data watchdog in the Netherlands, where Tesla’s European headquarters is located.

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Tesla informed the Dutch authorities about the breach, although it is unclear if the company has made any statements to the agency according to an AP spokesperson.

Tesla did not provide comment on Friday regarding the Handelsblatt report. The report stated that a large amount of customer data was located in a data set called “Tesla Files”.

The data protection office in the German state of Brandenburg, which is home to Tesla’s European gigafactory, described the data leak as “massive”.

“I can’t remember such a scale,” Brandenburg data protection officer Dagmar Hartge said, adding that the case had been handed to the Dutch authorities who would be responsible if the allegations led to an enforcement action.

The decision on whether to handle the case as a European procedure rests with the Dutch authorities, and they have a few weeks to make that determination, according to her statement.