The U.S. government has confirmed the fine of 5,000 million dollars that the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) imposed last day 12 to technology giant Facebook for faults in the privacy system of the company, according to official sources.
The sanction of 5,000 million to Facebook is the largest imposed on a company “for violating the privacy of consumers”. It is 200 times greater than any previous fine in the U.S. and 20 times more than any privacy fine imposed worldwide,” the FTC announced in a statement.
The FTC also reported that WhatsApp, Instagram and Messenger, companies that are part of the Facebook conglomerate, must also abide by the terms of the agreement with U.S. authorities. “Facebook should conduct a review of its privacy policies for any new or changed product, service or practice before it is implemented and document all of its decisions regarding privacy policies,” FTC said.
The trigger for the investigation was information unveiled in March 2018 according to which the British consulting firm Cambridge Analytica used an application to collect data from 87 million users of the platform without their consent and for political purposes. The company used Facebook data to create psychological profiles of voters it allegedly sold to the election campaign of now U.S. President Donald Trump during the 2016 elections, among others.
The U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) found that the company headed by Mark Zuckerberg did not properly inform its investors that developers and others outside the company had obtained data from users without their permission, in violation of Facebook’s own policies. Sharing data with third parties without notifying users constitutes, as the FTC has determined, a violation of the agreement on privacy that the social network reached in 2011 with the government agency. The company itself had already announced that it was expecting a financial penalty when it presented its quarterly results last April.