Facebook, in 2012 made a promise to Federal Trade Commission- in the form of a consent edict-that before sharing any personal data to any third party the company would get the consent from its users. But since reports revealed last March, that the company is sharing its user’s data with Cambridge Analytica, a political consulting firm, Facebook has violated the agreement made with the government to keep the user data secure. The report suggested that the access over personal information of nearly 87 million users were explicitly provided by Facebook violating the privacy law in 12 countries.
Last October, United Kingdom officials fined Facebook with a hefty amount of £500,000 as a result of Cambridge Analytica, but this amount seems dim if compared to the amount what FTC is discussing to impose on the company.
Following Cambridge Analytica and similar incidents, like a hacker accessing personal information of 30 million accounts taking advantage of a glitch in the “view as” feature of the application, the government officials and various members of different advocacy groups reached out to FTC to take strict actions in order to protect user’s privacy. According to the Post, the fine could be larger than $22.5 million imposed on Google by FTC in 2012, the largest fine imposed by FTC till date.
While we still don’t know how aggressively or even if the FTC will fine Facebook, it is clear that the company will be having a hard time in the coming future dealing with the breaches in its privacy agreements made.