FTC to hit Facebook with $5B fine - Mobile World Live

FTC to hit Facebook with $5B fine

13 JUL 2019

The US Federal Trade Commission (FTC) approved a $5 billion fine against Facebook for its recent privacy missteps, though the settlement has yet to get a green light from the Department of Justice, The Wall Street Journal (WSJ) reported.

Other specifics of the FTC enforcement package were not immediately available, but it is also expected to include restrictions on Facebook’s privacy-related practices, WSJ added.

The settlement would conclude a 2018 probe taken up by the FTC following Facebook’s Cambridge Analytica data breach. Specifically, regulators sought to determine whether Facebook violated the terms of an agreement it made with the authority in 2011, where it pledged to not collect and share personal data without users’ consent.

In April, Facebook said it set aside $3 billion to help cover an expected fine of between $3 billion and $5 billion.

WSJ previously reported such a fine would be the FTC’s largest-ever against a major tech company, the current record holder being a $22.5 million fine levied against Google in 2012.

However, the figure represents a fraction of Facebook’s revenue and net income, which totalled $55.8 billion and $22.1 billion in 2018, respectively.

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Diana Goovaerts

Diana joins Mobile World Live as its new US Editor, reporting on infrastructure and spectrum rollouts, regulatory issues, and other carrier news from the US market. Diana comes to GSMA from her former role as Editor of Wireless Week and...

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