Next Big Focus article Bell Mobility has reached an agreement to pay $1 billion to settle claims the company failed to provide the information required to make its payment to the government of Quebec, its first ever in-person payment, the company said in a statement.
The $1-billion settlement is the largest for any U.S. company to settle a civil claim.
In the settlement, Bell will pay $5.6 billion to cover the cost of complying with the requirements of the federal Privacy Protection Act, including the creation of an online database of personal information for all federal and provincial government departments.
In addition, Bell Mobility will pay the federal and Quebec governments $500 million to cover its legal fees, which are covered by the government’s own fund, Bell Canada said.
The company has also agreed to pay more than $500,000 in penalties and to pay the Quebec government $2 million to pay for any fines and costs associated with the federal government’s failure to comply with the Privacy Protection Order, the statement said.
Bell Mobility had faced legal action by the Quebec Ministry of Public Security in its efforts to collect the information that is used to make the payment.
“This settlement is another step in ensuring that our customers receive the data they need, and we look forward to providing more details as soon as possible,” David Boulanger, president of Bell Mobility, said in the statement.
Bell Canada and Quebec will work together to ensure the payment is made to customers who are in good standing and that we do not violate their rights,” the statement continued.
The settlement follows a similar agreement in October, which resulted in a settlement in a separate civil case between the company and Quebec.
That agreement included $6.2 million in penalties.
The companies’ settlement with the Quebec Government follows a court order that the federal privacy law require Bell Mobility to provide information about the personal information that it collects to the federal regulator and the provincial government.
Bell has been under pressure to make that information public.
The government of Ontario in September asked the Federal Trade Commission to investigate Bell Mobility over its privacy practices and to force the company to stop using its services.
A federal court ordered Bell to stop collecting data from customers after it was revealed the company had been using its smartphone data to collect advertising revenue.