This fine would be the biggest the FTC has ever imposed onto a Technology company. Facebook and the FTC are not yet in agreement on the amount. Facebook showed concern with what the FTC is demanding. If negotiation talks don’t work, the FTC would be able to take the issue to court, which would be a huge legal fight.
It has been confirmed by Facebook that it has been discussing the fine with the agency.
This record setting fine would be a reckoning for Facebook after a number of privacy lapses that may have placed personal data of its users at risk. Lawmakers put the company at fault for mishandling data, along with failing to stop other digital problems. These problems include the spread of disinformation from Russian operatives and other foreign actors, along with the rise of hate speech online.
A notable punishment against Facebook would show a new era of scrutiny for companies on the Silicon Valley after numerous privacy misconducts.
The current record holding fine the FTC has imposed was against Google that paid a $22.5 million fine in 2012.
The FTC’s probe into Facebook started in March of 2018 which was a response to Facebook’s ties with Cambridge Analytica, which accessed information on 87 million of Facebook’s users improperly.
The FTC’s investigation focused on conduct by Facebook. It also looked into numerous other privacy mishaps that were made public in recent times. The probe was used to find out if Facebook violated a 2011 agreement with the FTC about improving its privacy practices.
The agreement with the FTC made it so Facebook needed to notify users and be more transparent to make things clear before it shares personal information with third parties. The agreement also forbid Facebook from using deceitful methods on users regarding its privacy practices. FTC rulings state that the FTC is able to look into steep fines which are determined partly by the amount of times a company violates an order.
Facebook may see a significant risk of its reputation if it decides to fight the FTC penalty.
Kyle James Lee – The AEGIS Alliance – This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 4.0 International License.