According to a report by Washington Post, last week, Federal Trade Commission (FTC) officials are planning to impose a fine of over $22.5 billion on Facebook post a year of data breaches and revelations of illegal data sharing. Per FTC, Facebook may have violated a legally binding agreement with the government to protect the privacy of users’ personal data.
Lately, Facebook has been in news for its data breaches and issues related to its users’ data. It has also been in news for its Trump campaigns and its manipulations with the voter details during the U.S. elections.
According to the revelations made last year, over 87 million users’ data was given to Cambridge Analytica, a political consulting firm, without users’ consent. Facebook was fined £500,000 as a result of Cambridge Analytica, last October. Last year, lawmakers in the U.S. Congress summoned Mark Zuckerberg, Facebook CEO to testify for the first time where he apologized for the privacy violations.
This time Facebook might have to pay more than $22.5 million, the fine which was imposed on Google for tracking users of Apple’s Safari web browser in 2012. It was the greatest fine for violating an agreement with the FTC. This might turn out to be the first major fine against Facebook in the US.
The FTC agreement regarding privacy requires Facebook to seek users’ permission, before sharing the data with third parties and also inform the FTC in cases where others misuse that information.
Last week, privacy advocates urged FTC to take action against Facebook. Marc Rotenberg, the executive director of the Electronic Privacy Information Center, said, “The agency now has the legal authority, the evidence, and the public support to act. There can be no excuse for further delay.”
According to most Reddit users, Facebook should be strictly punished. One of the comments on Reddit reads, “It’d be better if the people responsible of doing it were sent to prison, but a big fine to their company should stop them from doing something like this again.”