Canadian coffee chain Tim Hortons monitored and recorded the movements of customers using the branded app, in violation of Canadian privacy laws, according to an investigation by authorities reported by the Office of the Privacy Commissioner private in the country.
According to the agency, the application made many users believe that access to geolocation would only be done by using the tool, to create more targeted promotions.
The fast food business would actually collect data on an ongoing basis, including where they live and work.
Even after suspending targeted advertising plans, Tim Hortons continued to collect the information for a year, officials said. Screening was stopped in 2020 after the investigation began.
According to the Canadian office, the network had a “vague and permissive” contract with a US third-party location services company, which would allow the company to sell unidentified location data for its own purposes.
The company replied to Canadian authorities that it uses the locations to a limited extent to analyze customer trends.
Tim Hortons has agreed to implement the authorities’ recommendations, such as a privacy management program and deletion of the remaining data.
The chain is owned by RBI (Restaurant Brands International), which also owns Burger King and Popeyes.
Joana Cunha with Andressa Motter and Paulo Ricardo Martins
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