Sunday, 14 July 2019 14:56

Facebook to pay US$5b for privacy violations

By

In a 3-2 decision, FTC Commissioners voted to impose a fine of approximately US$5 billion on Facebook for a variety of privacy issues.

The dissenters were Democrats, while Republicans held the majority position on the Commission. The dissenters sought significantly stricter limits on the company than did the Republican majority.

The FTC opened its investigation into Facebook's privacy posture following the Cambridge Analytica scandal in March of 2018. 

Many have argued that Facebook has been in near-continuous breach of its 2012 FTC settlement and perhaps the Cambridge Analytica issue along with another loss of some 50 million database records finally brought the FTC to action.

There have been rumours for some months that a penalty of this magnitude was on the cards, with observers noting that Facebook's accounts included a provision for a US$3.5 billion penalty.

After the announcement of the penalty was made late on Friday (US time), Facebook shares rose by 1.8%, suggesting that investors were largely happy with the magnitude of the fine and lack of other operating restrictions.

Of course the US Department of Justice still has to review the settlement prior to it becoming final, but changes at this late stage are very rare. Of some interest is that this fine dwarfs any previous penalty imposed by the FTC – the previous largest being US$22.5 million levied against Google in 2012.

Political commentary has largely come from the Democrats:

Senator Richard Blumenthal (D-Conn.) described the penalty as a "tap on the wrist," while Senator Elizabeth Warren (D-Mass.), budding presidential candidate, called the settlement a "victory for Facebook." Senator Mark Warner (D-Va.) said that with "the FTC either unable or unwilling to put in place reasonable guardrails to ensure that user privacy and data are protected, it's time for Congress to act".

This penalty is far from the end for Facebook. Various US state Attorneys also have pending actions, along with other countries around the world. Further, some presidential candidates have called for the break-up of the larger tech companies, particularly Facebook and Google.


Subscribe to ITWIRE UPDATE Newsletter here

GRAND OPENING OF THE ITWIRE SHOP

The much awaited iTWire Shop is now open to our readers.

Visit the iTWire Shop, a leading destination for stylish accessories, gear & gadgets, lifestyle products and everyday portable office essentials, drones, zoom lenses for smartphones, software and online training.

PLUS Big Brands include: Apple, Lenovo, LG, Samsung, Sennheiser and many more.

Products available for any country.

We hope you enjoy and find value in the much anticipated iTWire Shop.

ENTER THE SHOP NOW!

INTRODUCING ITWIRE TV

iTWire TV offers a unique value to the Tech Sector by providing a range of video interviews, news, views and reviews, and also provides the opportunity for vendors to promote your company and your marketing messages.

We work with you to develop the message and conduct the interview or product review in a safe and collaborative way. Unlike other Tech YouTube channels, we create a story around your message and post that on the homepage of ITWire, linking to your message.

In addition, your interview post message can be displayed in up to 7 different post displays on our the iTWire.com site to drive traffic and readers to your video content and downloads. This can be a significant Lead Generation opportunity for your business.

We also provide 3 videos in one recording/sitting if you require so that you have a series of videos to promote to your customers. Your sales team can add your emails to sales collateral and to the footer of their sales and marketing emails.

See the latest in Tech News, Views, Interviews, Reviews, Product Promos and Events. Plus funny videos from our readers and customers.

SEE WHAT'S ON ITWIRE TV NOW!

BACK TO HOME PAGE
David Heath

David Heath has had a long and varied career in the IT industry having worked as a Pre-sales Network Engineer (remember Novell NetWare?), General Manager of IT&T for the TV Shopping Network, as a Technical manager in the Biometrics industry, and as a Technical Trainer and Instructional Designer in the industrial control sector. In all aspects, security has been a driving focus. Throughout his career, David has sought to inform and educate people and has done that through his writings and in more formal educational environments.

Share News tips for the iTWire Journalists? Your tip will be anonymous

WEBINARS ONLINE & ON-DEMAND

GUEST ARTICLES

VENDOR NEWS

Guest Opinion

Guest Interviews

Guest Reviews

Guest Research

Guest Research & Case Studies

Channel News

Comments