Facebook May Agree To 20-Year Oversight Of Privacy Practices By The FTC

Dhir Acharya - May 15, 2019, 1:21 pm IST


Moreover, the decree requires Facebook to get a third party to audit every two years for the next two decades to ensure the efficiency of the program.

According to a report from Reuters, it’s possible that Facebook will agree to let the US government oversee its privacy policies and practices for 20 years.

The Federal Trade Commission (FTC) is conducting an investigation to find out if the social giant violated an agreement it signed with the government in 2011 where it promised to keep user data private. As per Facebook, it said that it did not violate the decree.

The-FTC-may-oversee-Facebook's-privacy-policies-and-practices-in-20-years
The FTC may oversee Facebook's privacy policies and practices in 20 years

According to the agreement, the social network had to get user consent before it can share their data with third parties. Moreover, the decree requires the company to get a third party to audit every two years for the next two decades to ensure the efficiency of the program.

After the infamous Cambridge Analytica scandal last year, the consumer watchdog started its investigation into Facebook, the scandal resulted in 87 million users’ data harvested without their consent.

It was reported that the social giant has been discussing with the consumer protection agency for several months to settle the investigation. In April, the company said that it had spared $3 billion for covering possible expenses of a potential fine that may result from the ongoing investigation.

Mark-Zuckerberg,-Facebook-CEO
Mark Zuckerberg, Facebook CEO

Thought the FTC hasn’t announced a fine yet, Facebook said it could reach up to $5 billion, the highest fine a US tech firm has ever paid. Previously, the highest fine that the FTC imposed on a technology company was $22.5 million, paid by Google for violating a privacy agreement.

Reuters cited a source saying that the settlement for Facebook’s case is probably just a month from now.

Both the FTC and Facebook refused to give comments on the matter.

In the past several months, we have seen a lot of efforts from the world leading social platform to protect user privacy, or at least that’s what it wants us to think. Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg consistently claims that he and his company is doing their best to improve the network and optimize the user experience. So far, however, except for some other privacy incidents and outages, it seems that what Zuckerberg claims are just words only.