FTC's Facebook Audit Didn't Catch Cambridge Analytica Leaks

FTC's Facebook Audit Didn't Catch Cambridge Analytica Leaks

The biennial report covers the time frame between February 12, 2015, to February 11, 2017, which coincides with the time when Cambridge Analytica sourced the data of over 87 million Facebook users, or probably more.

Audits such as the one released Friday are performed twice a year, as stipulated by a settlement between Facebook and the FTC entered into in 2011.

An investigation against Facebook in 2011 required the social media company to be audited by the Federal Trade Commission every two years.

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Engadget reports when Facebook was asked why the social media website did not reveal the Cambridge Analytica issue to PricewaterhouseCoopers, they responded stating that they did not deem it to be a privacy violation on Facebook's part.

According to PwC, Facebook's privacy controls seemed efficient to the auditors and offered reasonable levels of assurance when it comes to privacy protection. "We appreciate the opportunity to answer questions the FTC may have". In his congressional testimony last week, Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg appeared uninformed about key details of the agreement, saying he did not remember if it carried a financial penalty.

If found violating the 2011 FTC consent decree, a fine of $41,484 were to be incurred per user per day on Facebook. To put that in context, Facebook could theoretically owe $8 billion for one single day violation affecting all of its American users, or about half of the profit that the company booked for all of past year.

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"A letter has been issued by the Ministry of Electronics & I.T. on 28th March 2018 to Facebook seeking their response to the following questions: whether the personal data of Indian voters and users has been compromised by Cambridge Analytica or any other downstream entity in any manner, and if so, how was it compromised?" the ministry said in a statement. Users will also have the option to download data collected by Facebook such as uploaded photos, phone s shared with the site and posts on users timelines. While Facebook did have controls in place that allowed people to restrict such access, they are found buried in the site's settings and are hard to find.

"We no longer need excuses, but facts", she said. The agency is looking at whether Facebook has engaged in "unfair acts" that cause "substantial injury" to consumers.

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