Challenge to FTC/Facebook 2019 Settlement

FTC/Facebook settlement: Too Little, Too Late

Top News

Summary

EPIC has filed a Motion to Intervene in United States v. Facebook to protect the interests of Facebook users. The case concerns the proposed settlement between the FTC and Facebook following the Cambridge Analytica breach in 2018. EPIC said the settlement "is not adequate, reasonable, or appropriate." EPIC also explained that the settlement would extinguish more than 26,000 consumer complaints against Facebook pending at the FTC. EPIC asked the court for an opportunity for EPIC and others to be heard before the settlement is finalized. EPIC filed the original complaint that created legal authority for the FTC to oversee Facebook. Back in 2011, EPIC also urged the Commission to require Facebook to restore the privacy settings of users, give users access to all of the data that Facebook keeps about them, stop making facial recognition profiles without users' consent, make the results of the government privacy audits public, and stop secretly tracking users across the web. Earlier this year, EPIC and others urged the FTC to pursue structural remedies, including the divestiture of WhatsApp. Many organizations and individuals have expressed concern about the proposed settlement, which was narrowly approved by the Commission, 3-2.

Background

From 2009 to 2011, EPIC and a coalition of consumer organizations pursued several complaints with the Federal Trade Commission, alleging that Facebook had changed user privacy settings and disclosed the personal data of users to third parties without the consent of users. EPIC conducted extensive research and documented the instances of Facebook overriding the users’ privacy settings to reveal personal information and to disclose, for commercial benefit, user data, and the personal data of friends and family members, to third parties without their knowledge or affirmative consent.

In response to the complaints, the FTC launched an extensive investigation into Facebook’s policies and practices. The FTC and issued a Preliminary Order against Facebook in 2011 and then a Final Order in 2012. The Final Order bars Facebook from making any future misrepresentations about the privacy and security of a user’s personal information, requires Facebook to establish a comprehensive privacy program, requires Facebook to remove user information within thirty days after a user deletes an account, requires Facebook to obtain a user’s express consent before enacting changes its data sharing methods, and requires Facebook to have an independent privacy audit every two years. According to the FTC, the Final Order would remain in effect for 20 years.

Since 2012, EPIC has filed five detailed complaints with the Commission regarding Facebook’s business practices, alleging violations of the Consent Order.

On March 16, 2018, Facebook admitted to the unlawful transfer of 50 million user profiles to the data analytics firm Cambridge Analytica, which harvested the data without user consent. Cambridge Analytica, hired by President Trump’s 2016 presidential campaign, was able to collect the private information of approximately 270,000 users and their extensive friend networks under false pretenses as a research-driven application. All of the users that participated in the survey consented to having their data collected but was told it was for “academic use.” The third party application subsequently scraped the data of these user’s friends without their knowledge or consent and transferred the data to Cambridge Analytica. Facebook later revised the number of affected users to 87 million, making it one of the largest unlawful data transfers in Facebook’s history.

Facebook’s transfer of personal data to Cambridge Analytica was prohibited by the 2011 Facebook Order. The FTC’s failure to enforce its order resulted in the unlawful transfer of 87 million user records to a controversial data mining firm to influence a presidential election.

EPIC and consumer groups urged the FTC to investigate Facebook. A week later, the FTC confirmed an investigation into Facebook.

On July 24, 2019, after a 16 month investigation, the FTC announced a proposed settlement to end its investigation into Facebook. This was the first fine against Facebook since EPIC and a coalition of privacy organizations filed a complaint with the Commission about the company’s businesses practices back in 2009. The FTC fined Facebook $5 billion, but required no meaningful changes to the business practices that violate user privacy.

On July 26, 2019: EPIC filed a Motion to Intervene in United States v. Facebook to protect the interests of Facebook users.

What's Wrong With the Settlement

The proposed settlement does not protect consumers - despite the systematic problems with Facebook’s collection and use of consumer data exposed by the Cambridge Analytica scandal and subsequent investigations into Facebook’s practices. The settlement does not incentivize Facebook to fix its deeply problematic business model and practices. Instead, the settlement fails to meaningfully limit Facebook’s collection, use, and sharing of consumer data or impose any actually independent oversight over Facebook’s use of personal data. On the whole, the settlement is not meaningfully different from the 2012 Consent Order that proved to be woefully inadequate in the wake of Facebook’s continued privacy violations from 2012 to the present.

Despite the clear need for a transformation of Facebook’s practices, the proposed settlement does not change Facebook’s business model or impose restrictions on its collection and use of consumer data. Facebook’s entire business practice rests on advertising. The company sells its advertisements based on its massive and ever-growing collection of personal information about consumers, priding itself on its level of targeting. Besides information provided by consumers such as their alma mater or favorite movies or artists, Facebook collects behavioral information (such as viewing habits, reactions to content, or internet activity) both on Facebook and using embedded technology elsewhere on the internet. This equates to mass surveillance of consumers by the company. Because companies purchase Facebook advertising because of this vast reservoir of consumer data, Facebook will continue to be incentivized to collect and monetize massive amounts of consumer data unless the Federal Trade Commission intervenes.

Rather than intervening to force Facebook to adjust its business model and practices to account for consumer privacy, the settlement fails to restrict Facebook’s advertising tactics or mass surveillance. Instead, it permits Facebook to continue to make its own determinations about user privacy and data collection if it produces additional records about those choices. It also does not meaningfully change the company’s structure or financial incentives. The large settlement amount, while flashy, constitutes only 7% of Facebook’s projected global ad revenue for 2019 of $67.37 billion . Given the comparative ease with which Facebook can pay fines of this degree, the company can retain its business model and its profitability under the settlement. Facebook is incentivized to continue to operate as it currently does, merely risking paying future fines out of its revenue.

In addition, the settlement does not impose independent oversight over Facebook - despite the fact that the lack of oversight after the 2012 Consent Order resulted in massive abuses of consumer information by Facebook and connected third-party companies. The required “Independent Privacy Committee” of the Board of Directors - whose members will be nominated by a committee chosen by Facebook - has minimal actual independence or power beyond ensuring that the required paperwork has been completed. While the settlement mandates an internal privacy program at Facebook, it does not give the Commission or any other external body authority to oversee the mandated program or oversight committee.

Instead, it merely requires Facebook to provide the Commission with copies of internal Facebook quarterly reports and biennial privacy program assessments from contractors chosen by Facebook and confirmed by the “Independent Privacy Committee.” The same is true for Facebook’s responses to illicit collection of Facebook user data by third parties. Facebook has liberty to respond to these complaints in any way that the company desires as long as it creates a paper trail of the incident. The new requirements neither institute oversight over Facebook’s collection and use of consumer data, nor increase public transparency about the company’s privacy practices to increase consumer awareness of Facebook’s deceptive privacy practices. Facebook must maintain additional records on privacy and data security under the settlement, but is not required to publicly disclose these records or adjust its practices based on these records or any other requirements.

Despite these inadequacies, the settlement extinguishes more than 26,000 consumer complaints against Facebook pending at the FTC. The proposed Consent Decree, now before this Court, states that “[t]he parties have consented to entry of this Stipulated Order to resolve any and all claims that Defendant, its officers, and directors, prior to June 12, 2019, violated the Commission’s Decision and Order in In re Facebook, Inc., C-4365, 2012 FTC LEXIS 135 (F.T.C. July 27, 2012). Furthermore, this Consent Decree resolves all consumer-protection claims known by the FTC prior to June 12, 2019, that Defendant, its officers, and directors violated Section 5 of the FTC Act.”

This prevents these complaints from being remedied, decreases public transparency, and protects Facebook from having to answer to the public about its myriad privacy violations. The settlement provides blanket immunity for Facebook and its executives for “any and all” violations of the 2012 Consent Order This prevents EPIC and other advocacy groups from pursuing the complaints previously filed at the FTC.

Very few requirements in the settlement are new. Many - including the prohibition against misrepresentations, the creation of a “comprehensive” privacy program, and the biennial assessments by a third-party professional - derive directly from the terms of the 2012 Consent Order . If the proposed settlement is instituted, Facebook will concede minimal additional requirements to the Federal Trade Commission.

Legal Documents

Agency Documents

Resources

FOIA Documents

Reactions to the Proposed Settlement

  • “The proposed settlement does little to change the business model or practices that led to the recidivism. The settlement imposes no meaningful changes to the company's structure or financial incentives, which led to these violations. Nor does it include any restrictions on the company's mass surveillance or advertising tactics. Instead, the order allows Facebook to decide for itself how much information it can harvest from users and what it can do with that information, as long as it creates a paper trail.” — Rohit Chopra, FTC Commissioner, July 24, 2019
  • “[T]wo major types of injunctive relief are missing from the settlement. I could have considered supporting the order if it included meaningful limitations on data collection and sharing and substantial public transparency about Facebook's data use and order compliance. Without such provisions, the order's ability to achieve specific and general deterrence through its injunctive terms is critically limited.” — Rebecca Kelly Slaughter, FTC Commissioner, July 24, 2019
  • “The record is now clear: Facebook egregiously & repeatedly broke the law, turning a blind eye to abuse & putting its rapacious rush to profits ahead of users' safety. This fig leaf deal releases Facebook without requiring any real privacy protections--no restraints on data use, no accountability for executives, nothing more than chump change fines. Facebook will never reform until forced to. The FTC failed to heed history. Facebook has written this penalty down as a one-time-cost in return for the extraordinary profits reaped from a decade of data misuse.The American public is owed more than another Zuckerberg apology & an anemic FTC settlement.” — Sen. Richard Blumenthal (D-Conn), July 24, 2019
  • “We believe that the reported settlement is woefully inadequate. It is clear that a $5 billion fine alone is a far cry from the type of monetary figure that would alter the incentives and behavior of Facebook and its peers. We are concerned that the FTC has failed to impose strict structural reforms and managerial accoutability that would put an end to Facebook's privacy invasions.” — Sens. Richard Blumenthal (D-Conn), Josh Hawley (R-Mo.), and Edward J. Markey (D-Mass.), July 16, 2019
  • “In my opinion, [$5B] that's not enough. We all know they've been in violation of their privacy agreements.” — Sen. Marsha Blackburn (R-Tenn), Chair of the Tech Task Force, July 16, 2019
  • “The FTC just gave Facebook a Christmas present five months early. It's very disappointing that such an enormously powerful company that engaged in such serious misconduct is getting a slap on the wrist. This fine is a fraction of Facebook's annual revenue. It won't make them think twice about their responsibility to protect user data.” — Rep. David Cicilline (D-R.I.), Chairman of Subcommittee on Antitrust, Commercial and Administrative Law, July 23, 2019
  • “This is very disappointing. This settlement does nothing to change Facebook's creepy surveillance of its own users & the misuse of user data. It does nothing to hold executives accountable. It utterly fails to penalize Facebook in any effective way.” — Sen. Josh Hawley (R-Mo.), July 24, 2019
  • “With its settlement with Facebook, the FTC not only fell short, it fell on its face. Facebook is getting away with some of the most egregious corporate bad behavior in the age of the internet. This settlement is a partisan abdication of the FTC's duty. The only market-wide message the Commission is sending is that it is acceptable for online giants to beg for forgiveness afterward rather than get permission first. The FTC is giving little confidence to the American people that Facebook and other online companies will now have to operate within a new incentive structure that will end the profits-over-privacy status quo.” — Sen. Edward J. Markey (D-Mass.), July 24, 2019
  • “While $5 billion is a record fine for the FTC, monetary damages are not enough. Facebook has repeatedly demonstrated that it prioritizes profit over people. Tough oversight is needed to prevent the abuse of consumer information by Facebook and other companies. Comprehensive privacy legislation is necessary to strengthen the FTC's authorities and give it more enforcement tools and resources so that violating consumers' privacy and breaking public trust isn't just the cost of doing business.” — Rep. Frank Pallone (D-N.J.), July 24, 2019
  • “If today's reports of a record-breaking $5 billion fine for Facebook are true, the sad reality is that this does not go nearly far enough. For a company that last year alone generated revenue nearly 11 times greater than the reported fine, the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) should send a clear signal to Facebook and so many other tech companies that privacy is their ultimate responsibility. If these reports are true, then they failed.” — Rep. Jan Schakowsky (D-IL), July 12, 2019
  • “The FTC is sending the message that wealthy executives and massive corporations can rampantly violate Americans' privacy, lie about how our personal information is used and abused and get off with no meaningful consequences. Americans will see our privacy violated again and again until Congress passes strong privacy laws that gives the FTC the resources and authority it needs to hold large corporations - and the executives at the top - accountable for protecting our most personal data.” — Sen. Ron Wyden (D-Ore.), July 24, 2019
  • “The 3-2 Facebook decision by the FTC leaves millions of Americans vulnerable to all the problems unleashed by the Cambridge Analytica scandal. The commission adopted a woefully inadequate remedy that does nothing to stem the fundamental loss of its user privacy which led to our original 2009 complaint.” — Jeff Chester, Executive Director, Center for Digital Democracy, July 26, 2019
  • “Despite the large price tag, the FTC settlement provides no meaningful changes to Facebook's structure or financial incentives. It allows Facebook to continue to set its own limits on how much user data it can collect and it gives Facebook immunity for unspecified violations. The public has a right to know what laws Facebook violated. Corporations should face consequences for violating the public trust, not be given a rubber stamp to carry out business as usual. This settlement limits the ability of Black users to challenge Facebook's misuse of their data and force real accountability which is why the courts must review the fairness of this settlement. ” — Brandi Collins-Dexter, Senior Campaign Director, Color of Change, July 26, 2019
  • “Facebook has been exploiting kids for years, and this proposed settlement is essentially a get-out-of-jail-free card. It potentially extinguishes our children's privacy complaints against Facebook, but offers absolutely no protections for kids' privacy moving forward. It also sweeps under the rug a complaint detailing how Facebook knowingly and intentionally tricked kids into spending money on mobile games over several years, sometimes to the tune of thousands of dollars per child.” — Josh Golin, Executive Director, Campaign for Commercial-Free Childhood, July 26, 2019
  • “The FTC's settlement with Facebook sells consumers short by failing to change the company's mass surveillance practices and wiping away other complaints that deserved to be addressed. It needs to be stronger to truly protect our privacy. ” — Susan Grant, Director of Consumer Protection and Privacy, Consumer Federation of America, July 26, 2019
  • “The FTC's settlement is woefully insufficient in light of Facebook's persistent privacy violations. The fine is a mere cost of doing business that makes breaking the law worth it for Facebook. Remedies must curb Facebook's widespread data collection and promote competition. Otherwise Facebook will continue to fortify its monopoly power by surveilling users both on Facebook and off, and users can't vote with their feet when Facebook violates their privacy. The public must have the opportunity to be heard on this negligent settlement.” — Sally Hubbard, Director of Enforcement Strategy, Open Markets Institute, July 26, 2019
  • “This laughable $5 billion settlement with the category-killer social media giant Facebook makes the much smaller Equifax settlement for sloppy security look harsh. Facebook intentionally collects and shares an ever-growing matrix of information about consumers, their friends and their interests in a mass surveillance business model. It routinely changes its previous privacy promises without consent. It doesn't adequately audit its myriad business partners. The FTC essentially said to Facebook: Pay your parking ticket but don't ever change. Your fast-and-loose practices are okay with 3 of the 5 of us. Not changing those practices will come back to haunt the FTC, consumers and the world.” — Edmund Mierzwinski, Senior Director for Federal Consumer Programs, U.S. PIRG, July 26, 2019
  • “The FTC's pending Facebook settlement does not take adequate measures to limit the collection and sharing of consumers' personal information, but appears to provide the company with extensive protections from even future violations. Consumer Action respectfully urges the court to consider positions from interested parties who have related complaints filed with the FTC to ensure that the most fair and comprehensive agreement is approved.” — Linda Sherry, Director of National Priorities, Consumer Action, July 26, 2019
  • “On behalf of families across the country, Common Sense fully stands behind EPIC's motion. The proposed settlement is a get out of jail free card for Facebook, purporting to absolve Facebook not only of liability for privacy abuses but for other -- completely unaddressed and unexplored -- Section 5 abuses. One such abuse that the FTC is aware of and that court documents confirm includes tricking kids into making in-app purchases that have put families out hundreds and even thousands of dollars --something the company has yet to meaningfully change its policies on to this day. Such a broad release is unprecedented, unjustified and unacceptable.” — James P. Steyer, CEO and Founder of Common Sense Media, July 26, 2019
  • “The FTC's settlement amounts to Facebook promising yet again to adhere to its own privacy policy, while reserving the right to change that policy at any time. That approach will fail to protect users' privacy. The court should reject the settlement and order the FTC to try again and do better.” — Robert Weissman, President, Public Citizen, July 26, 2019
  • “The weightlessness of the fine isn't the only problem with the deal. The settlement order grants Facebook and its officers immunity in a wide range of possible misdeeds committed before June 12.” — New York Times Editorial Board, July 25, 2019
  • “the Facebook settlement gives both the company and its executives blanket immunity, not just for any violations the FTC has claimed, but for any violations it hasn't claimed. [...] It's extraordinary that a repeat offender that has shown a disdain for the FTC's authority would get such comprehensive, top-to-bottom immunity. This isn't just a plea bargain, it's a plenary indulgence.” — Devin Coldewey, TechCrunch, July 24, 2019
  • “The biggest story from this settlement is that the public has no sense of the breadth of Facebook's misdeeds for which they have a purchased a `get out of meaningful accountability relatively cheaply' card.” — Jeff Hauser, The Revolving Door Project, July 25, 2019
  • “What Facebook's settlement with the Federal Trade Commission, announced Wednesday morning, doesn't do is change the fundamental way Facebook operates: Facebook will continue to harvest the data it collects about its 2 billion-plus users and employ that information to run an incredibly powerful advertising business.” — Peter Kafka, Vox, July 24, 2019
  • “Worst of all, the settlement completely indemnifies the company and its leaders for "any and all claims prior to 12 June 2019". So, everything. ” — Siva Vaidhyanathan, The Guardian, July 26, 2019

Editorials and Op-eds on the Settlement

News

  • The Technology 202: Facebook won't get past the Cambridge Analytica scandal anytime soon, Washington Post, November 7, 2019
  • FTC Privacy Settlement Too Favorable To Facebook, Watchdogs Say, MediaPost, October 17, 2019
  • $5B Facebook Deal Lets Gov't Grab User Data, Court Told, Law360, October 16, 2019
  • Facebook’s $5 Billion Privacy Settlement Argued Consumers Weren’t Harmed. Experts Think the Damage Was Incalculable, Fortune, October 2, 2019
  • EPIC Steps Up Bid To Stop Facebook's $5B FTC Deal, Law360, August 14, 2019
  • More news

  • Facebook fumbles on privacy, again, POLITICO, August 14, 2019
  • Facebook’s settlements with the Federal Government—Key takeaways for all companies to consider, Lexology, August 2, 2019
  • EPIC challenges FTC-Facebook settlement, IAPP, July 31, 2019
  • Facebook cares about its users’ privacy*, Think Progress, July 31, 2019
  • Privacy group asks court to reconsider FTC’s $5 billion Facebook deal, Ars Technica, July 30, 2019
  • What’s Next After Facebook’s Record $5 Billion Fine and Cambridge Analytica?, National Law Review, July 30, 2019
  • Facebook privacy deal with regulator under attack, The Times, July 28, 2019
  • EPIC privacy group sues FTC for letting Facebook off easy, The Verge, July 26, 2019
  • EPIC asks judge to hear from critics before approving $5B Facebook settlement, The Hill, July 26, 2019
  • EPIC Files Legal Challenge to Facebook’s $5 Billion F.T.C. Settlement, New York Times, July 26, 2019
  • Facebook Penalty Sends Message to Big Tech, WSJ, July 25, 2019
  • 4 Takeaways From Facebook's Historic $5B Privacy Settlement, Law360, July 25, 2019
  • Facebook Board to Tighten Oversight, as Zuckerberg Keeps Control, Wall Street Journal, July 25, 2019
  • Critics Pan Facebook's Privacy Settlement, Forbes, July 25, 2019
  • A $5 Billion Fine for Facebook Won’t Fix Privacy, New York Times (Editorial), July 25, 2019
  • Facebook hit with $5-billion federal fine for privacy violations, Los Angeles Times, July 24, 2019
  • Facebook Fined Record $5 Billion By FTC For Privacy Violations, HuffPost, July 24, 2019
  • FTC fines Facebook $5 billion for privacy violations, adds oversight, PBS Newshour, July 24, 2019
  • Facebook expected to settle with FTC today, paying $5bn over data handling and agreeing to new controls, Computing (UK), July 24, 2019
  • Facebook Fined $5 Billion and Ordered to Add Oversight of Data Practices, New York Times, July 24, 2019
  • US slaps $5 bn fine on Facebook, toughens privacy oversight, AFP, July 24, 2019
  • FTC Fines Facebook $5 Billion Over Privacy Violations, CBS San Francisco, July 24, 2019
  • Facebook to pay $5bn fine, but will privacy prevail?, Al Jazeera, July 24, 2019
  • Facebook Settlement Criticized for Weak Privacy Protections, Consumer Reports, July 24, 2019
  • There's Zero Chance Facebook's 'Historic' FTC Fine Prevents Future Abuse, Lawmakers and Privacy Advocates Say, Gizmodo, July 24, 2019
  • This is what Facebook’s $5 billion fine means for your privacy, MarketWatch, July 24, 2019
  • FTC fines Facebook $5B, adds limited oversight on privacy, Washington Post, July 24, 2019
  • Facebook To Pay Record $5B FTC Fine For Privacy Breaches, Law360, July 24, 2019
  • For Facebook’s Zuckerberg, FTC settlement could bring a new era of accountability, Washington Post, July 24, 2019
  • Facebook FTC Deal Shows Need for Privacy Bill, Lawmakers Say, Bloomberg, July 24, 2019
  • Today was Facebook's worst day ever, and it won’t make a difference, Engadget, July 24, 2019
  • Facebook will have to pay a record-breaking fine for violating users’ privacy. But the FTC wanted more., The Washington Post, July 23, 2019
  • Facebook Settlement Requires Mark Zuckerberg to Certify Privacy Protections, Wall Street Journal, July 23, 2019
  • Facebook Settlement Expected to Mandate Privacy Committee, Wall Street Journal, July 22, 2019
  • FTC Set to Unveil Terms of $5 Billion Facebook Settlement, Barron's, July 22, 2019
  • Who should keep an eye on Silicon Valley?, POLITICO, July 21, 2019
  • Column: If a $5-billion fine won’t shake Facebook, what can bring it to heel?, Los Angeles Times, July 18, 2019
  • Facebook's $5B Fine Would Set Record But Not Quiet Critics, Law360, July 16, 2019
  • Tell me more, tell me more, POLITICO Morning Tech, July 16, 2019
  • Facebook to pay FTC $5bn fine over Cambridge Analytica, Computing, July 15, 2019
  • Facebook's $5bn FTC penalty slammed as a 'tap on the wrist', The Inquirer, July 15, 2019
  • FTC’s $5 Billion Fine Alone Won’t Get Facebook Out of Crosshairs, Wall Street Journal, July 15, 2019
  • FTC to fine Facebook about $5 billion for user-privacy violations, reports say, CBS News, July 15, 2019
  • FTC to fine Facebook $5 billion over privacy violations: report, Chicago Tribune, July 12, 2019
  • Why 'we can't stop' with just making Facebook split up, Yahoo, June 18, 2019
  • Pressure mounts on Facebook over Mark Zuckerberg's emails on privacy practices, ongoing FTC investigation, Fox News, June 15, 2019
  • Structural Remedies In Spotlight In Facebook Privacy Probe, Law360, May 20, 2019
  • Democrats Need to Tame the Facebook Monster They Helped Create, POLITICO Magazine, May 19, 2019
  • Is Facebook becoming too big to exist? A co-founder thinks so, QRIUS, May 14, 2019
  • Can Facebook be broken up? What you need to know, CNET, May 10, 2019
  • Facebook's Privacy Practices May Get More Oversight, Consumer Reports, May 3, 2019
  • Facebook's FTC Settlement May Include Privacy Oversight, PC Magazine, May 2, 2019
  • Facebook could get new privacy oversight and record-breaking fine in FTC deal, Fox News, May 2, 2019
  • Facebook could create new privacy positions as part of FTC settlement, The Verge, May 2, 2019
  • Mark Zuckerberg could become Facebook's 'designated compliance officer', Mashable, May 2, 2019
  • Facebook Settlement With FTC To Include New Privacy Committee, MediaPost, May 2, 2019
  • New privacy oversight on the table for Facebook, Zuckerberg, POLITICO Pro, May 1, 2019
  • How to Take Back Control From Facebook, New York Times, April 30, 2019
  • Facebook Unveils Redesign as It Tries to Move Past Privacy Scandals, New York Times, April 30, 2019
  • A Record FTC Fine Won't Fix Facebook, Privacy Experts Say, Consumer Reports, April 26, 2019
  • Why Facebook's 'biggest fine ever' is actually peanuts, The Week, April 26, 2019
  • Facebook Takes $3 Billion Hit, Anticipating FTC Fine, BankInfo Security, April 26, 2019
  • Regulators Around the World Are Circling Facebook, New York Times, April 26, 2019
  • Facebook expects up to $5B FTC fine, POLITICO, April 25, 2019
  • Facebook sets aside billions of dollars for a potential FTC fine, Washington Post, April 25, 2019
  • FTC could hold Zuckerberg personally accountable for Facebook lapses, report says, Los Angeles Times, April 19, 2019
  • Facebook Poised to Fight Disclosure of U.S. Privacy Assessments, Bloomberg, April 18, 2019
  • Facebook Slips After Admitting Email Contact Upload in Latest Privacy Glitch, The Street, April 18, 2019
  • Congress to Zuckerberg: Facebook doesn't get to make the rules, Washington Examiner, April 5, 2019
  • Zuckerberg's Calls for Regulation Are Seen Missing the Mark, Bloomberg, April 1, 2019
  • Status update: How Facebook is dealing with a year's worth of crises, CBS News, March 26, 2019
  • FTC under fire, POLITICO Morning Tech, March 25, 2019
  • Can Washington keep watch over Silicon Valley? The FTC’s Facebook probe is a high-stakes test, Washington Post, February 20, 2019
  • Facebook Data Leak Negotiations Put FTC In Hot Seat, Law360, February 15, 2019
  • Facebook may face multi-billion dollar fine for Cambridge Analytica scandal, Ars Technica, February 15, 2019
  • The U.S. government and Facebook are negotiating a record, multibillion-dollar fine for the company’s privacy lapses, Washington Post, February 14, 2019
  • Call for Facebook to be broken up and fined billions over privacy, Yahoo News UK, January 29, 2019
  • The Technology 202: Facebook's messaging plans spark privacy, antitrust concerns around the world, Washington Post, January 29, 2019
  • Facebook Deserves $2B Privacy Fine, Advocacy Orgs Tell FTC, Law360, January 27, 2019
  • Facebook's plan to merge its messaging services ignites further antitrust concerns, CNBC, January 27, 2019
  • Groups call for FTC to break up Facebook, The Hill, January 25, 2019
  • The Technology 202, Washington Post, January 25, 2019
  • EPIC, Open Markets Institute and other groups urge FTC to break up Facebook, SC Magazine, January 25, 2019
  • Zuckerberg Plans to Integrate WhatsApp, Instagram and Facebook Messenger, New York Times, January 25, 2019
  • Advocacy groups are pushing the FTC to break up Facebook, The Verge, January 24, 2019
  • America Needs a Privacy Law, New York Times, December 25, 2018
  • Why the F.T.C. Is Taking a New Look at Facebook Privacy, New York Times, December 22, 2018
  • After Latest Facebook Fiasco, Focus Falls on Federal Commission, Techonomy, December 21, 2018
  • Too ‘Bad To The Bone’ For A Facebook Facelift?, Chief Executive, November 20, 2018
  • What the FTC really needs to deal with Facebook, IAPP, November 20, 2018
  • Facebook Failed to Police How Its Partners Handled User Data, New York Times, November 12, 2018
  • EPIC Urges FTC To Fine Facebook Amid EU Data Row, Law360, August 17, 2018
  • Government-data watchdog slaps Facebook on wrist, WND, July 12, 2018
  • Facebook’s Zuckerberg due to face new test in front of European lawmakers, Washington Post, May 22, 2018
  • Advocates Question Facebook's Latest Effort To Protect Data, NPR, May 15, 2018
  • Facebook Co-Founder: ‘Self-Regulation Alone is Concerning’, Techonomy, May 11, 2018
  • Regulating Privacy, New York Times, May 7, 2018
  • Ireland sending Facebook privacy fight to European Union court, WND, May 6, 2018
  • The agency in charge of policing Facebook and Google is 103 years old. Can it modernize?, Washington Post, May 4, 2018
  • The Facebook-WhatsApp Lesson: Privacy Protection Necessary for Innovation, Techonomy, May 4, 2018
  • EPIC wants unredacted privacy assessments from Facebook, Compliance Week, April 26, 2018
  • An EPIC Lawsuit, The Hill, April 24, 2018
  • Digital counter surveillance for all audiences, La Vanguardia (Spain), April 24, 2018
  • 'Facebook's privacy controls are sufficient, "said audit in 2017, Estadao Link, April 24, 2018
  • Facebook’s hand-picked watchdogs gave it high marks for privacy even as the tech giant lost control of users’ data, Washington Post, April 24, 2018
  • Senator Wants Fines, Tighter Leash On Facebook By FTC, Law360, April 23, 2018
  • EPIC Sues FTC Over Facebook's Privacy Audits, POLITICO Morning Tech, April 23, 2018
  • Facebook privacy audit by auditors finds everything is awesome!, The Register, April 21, 2018
  • FTC-mandated audit cleared Facebook's privacy policies in 2017, Engadget, April 20, 2018
  • Audit Cleared Facebook’s Privacy Practices Despite Cambridge Analytica Leak, Wall Street Journal, April 20, 2018
  • https://www.wired.com/story/facebooks-2017-privacy-audit-didnt-catch-cambridge-analytica/, WIRED, April 19, 2018
  • Audit Approved of Facebook Policies, Even After Cambridge Analytica Leak, New York Times, April 19, 2018
  • Facebook Received Positive Audit, Despite Cambridge Analytica Data Transfers, MediaPost, April 19, 2018
  • Will the FTC come down hard on Facebook? It's only happened twice in 20 years, USA TODAY, April 18, 2018
  • Cambridge Analytica Whistleblower Empowers Citizen Action, Government Accountability Project, April 18, 2018
  • Facebook to face class action suit on facial recognition, NY Daily News, April 17, 2018
  • Facebook gives more details on how it tracks non-users, USA TODAY, April 17, 2018
  • Now Facebook confronted by overseas data-privacy fight, WND, April 14, 2018
  • Here's what the Facebook crisis means for AT&T and Time Warner, Dallas News, April 13, 2018
  • Facebook Isn't Out of the Woods Yet, The Street, April 13, 2018
  • How Facebook can have your data even if you're not on Facebook, USA TODAY, April 13, 2018
  • Why Facebook's 2011 Promises Haven't Protected Users, WIRED, April 12, 2018
  • After Facebook hearings, users want to know: who's protecting my data?, USA TODAY, April 12, 2018
  • Facebook in crisis: Mark Zuckerberg's testimony reveals massive problems remain, Fox News, April 12, 2018
  • Transcript of Zuckerberg’s appearance before House committee, Washington Post, April 12, 2018
  • Fact-checking Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg's congressional testimony, Polifact, April 12, 2018
  • Mark Zuckerberg's Privacy Shell Game, WIRED, April 11, 2018
  • Facebook stock jumps higher as Mark Zuckerberg testifies, CBS, April 11, 2018
  • It would have taken more than privacy laws to prevent the Cambridge Analytica scandal, The Hill, April 11, 2018
  • Facebook, Cambridge Analytica, and Grindr: Frank Pasquale Talks About Big Data and HIV Disclosure, TheBody.com, April 11, 2018
  • What You Don’t Know About How Facebook Uses Your Data, New York Times, April 11, 2018
  • Facebook’s Days as an Unregulated Monopoly May Be Numbered, Wall Street Journal, April 11, 2018
  • What we learned from Zuckerberg’s testimony, and what we still don’t know, PBS Newshour, April 11, 2018
  • Facebook and Cambridge Analytica: Is the genie out of the bottle?, ZDNet, April 11, 2018
  • 4 Things To Watch As Facebook CEO Heads To Congress, Law360, April 10, 2018
  • What to do if Facebook says your info was used by Cambridge Analytica, USA TODAY, April 10, 2018
  • 9 questions Congress should ask Mark Zuckerberg, Vox, April 10, 2018
  • Facebook's Zuckerberg to testify over data breach, Al Jazeera, April 10, 2018
  • Brenda Lee Zuckerberg Is Sorry, Chief Executive, April 10, 2018
  • Today’s question for Facebook will be ‘what happens next?’: EPIC President, CNBC, April 10, 2018
  • As Zuckerberg Prepares to Testify, Questions Grow Over How to Protect Data, Wall Street Journal, April 9, 2018
  • 5 Facebook facepalms (just last week), Naked Security, April 9, 2018
  • Facebook broadens estimate of data misuse to 87 million people, including more than 600,000 Canadians, The Globe and Mail, April 5, 2018
  • Is This European Law Behind Facebook's Privacy Shift, Newsweek, April 2, 2018
  • Hey Alexa, can you keep a secret from snooping big tech? , Economic Times, April 2, 2018
  • Facebook Faces Calls to Further Protect User Privacy, Voice of America, April 2, 2018
  • Facing outcry over data breach, Facebook again overhauls privacy settings, Yahoo News, March 30, 2018
  • Facebook limits ad targeting after Cambridge Analytica data leak, USA TODAY, March 30, 2018
  • Facebook again overhauls privacy settings after outcry over data breach, RawStory, March 30, 2018
  • Tim Cook Blasts Facebook & Google, Calls For Government Regulation, CleanTechnica, March 30, 2018
  • Facebook Changing Privacy Controls As Criticism Escalates, Daily Democrat Press, March 30, 2018
  • Facebook under fire, but it’s just part of ‘surveillance economy’, Christian Science Monitor, March 29, 2018
  • Consumer, privacy groups urge Zuckerberg to hire Jimmy Carter as election monitor, The Hill, March 29, 2018
  • Amidst data breach scandal, Facebook revamps privacy tools and settings to give users greater control, The Economic Times, March 29, 2018
  • Privacy groups hit at Facebook, POLITICO, March 28, 2018
  • Cambridge Analytica whistleblower testifies, CBS This Morning, March 27, 2018
  • Special Report With Bret Baier, Fox News, March 27, 2018
  • Behind Facebook's baby step fixes: Defending its ad business, Associated Press, March 26, 2018
  • FTC opens probe into Facebook privacy practices , Financial Times, March 26, 2018
  • The FTC Is Officially Investigating Facebook's Data Practices, Wired, March 26, 2018
  • Facebook had a closer relationship than it disclosed with the academic it called a liar, The Washington Post, March 23, 2018
  • Behind Facebook's Baby Step Fixes: Defending Its Ad Business, US News & World Report, March 23, 2018
  • Lawmakers Ask Zuckerberg To Testify About Data Misuse, Law360, March 23, 2018
  • Facebook-Cambridge Analytica shows the need for a new privacy law, Business Insider, March 22, 2018
  • Facebook feels the pressure over data leak, Irish Examiner, March 22, 2018
  • Facebook’s latest data breach reveals Silicon Valley’s fortunes are built on pilfering privacy, Salon, March 22, 2018
  • What you can do to protect your personal data on Facebook, PBS Newshour, March 22, 2018
  • Facebook Swelters in Cambridge Analytica Heat, E-Commerce Times, March 22, 2018
  • How the FTC Could Have Avoided the Facebook Mess, Techonomy, March 22, 2018
  • Facebook Crisis Reignites Washington’s Scrutiny of Social Networks, Bloomberg BNA, March 21, 2018
  • Facebook data scandal: the legal questions, Financial Times, March 21, 2018
  • Privacy groups put pressure on FTC's Facebook probe, POLITICO Pro, March 21, 2018
  • Three Questions: Prof. Jeffrey Sonnenfeld on the Crisis at Facebook, Yale Insights, March 21, 2018
  • Facebook Owes You More Than This, WIRED, March 20, 2018
  • Can Facebook be trusted with your personal info? Voter harvesting scheme shows perils for users, USA TODAY, March 20, 2018
  • Facebook’s rules for accessing user data lured more than just Cambridge Analytica, Washington Post, March 20, 2018
  • Facebook Leaves Its Users’ Privacy Vulnerable, New York Times (Editorial), March 20, 2018
  • Facebook facing federal investigation over Cambridge Analytica data scandal, CBS News, March 20, 2018
  • As data misuse scandal grows, Facebook investigated by FTC, meets with lawmakers, USA TODAY, March 20, 2018
  • The Latest: Cambridge Analytica whistleblower regrets work, San Francisco Chronicle, March 20, 2018
  • US, European officials question Facebook's protection of personal data, Washington Post, March 19, 2018
  • Data leak puts Facebook under intensifying scrutiny on two continents, Seattle Times, March 19, 2018
  • Cambridge Analytica Breach Reveals Facebook’s Weak User Data Defenses, eWeek, March 19, 2018
  • Facebook says you 'own' all the data you post. Not even close, say privacy experts, Los Angeles Times, March 19, 2018
  • Facebook may have violated FTC privacy deal, say former federal officials, triggering risk of massive fines, The Washington Post, March 18, 2018
  • Officials: Facebook may have violated FTC privacy deal, Fort Wayne Journal Gazette, March 18, 2018
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