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Home / Business / Federal investigations by Facebook could blame Mark Zuckerberg for privacy, sources say

Federal investigations by Facebook could blame Mark Zuckerberg for privacy, sources say




Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg on Capitol Hill (April 11, 2018) (Andrew Harnik / AP)

US regulators investigate Facebook Because their users' personal information has been abused, the company's CEO, Mark Zuckerberg, has sought to examine his previous privacy statements and weigh them up to see if he has any seeks new, strengthened control of its leadership.

Discussions on How to Hold Zuckerberg Accountable Facebook's data breaches were related to extensive discussions between the Federal Trade Commission and Facebook that could resolve the government's more than a year-long investigation, two said in the talks trusted persons. Both demanded anonymity, as the investigation of the FTC is legally confidential.

Such a move could create new legal, political and public relations for one of Silicon Valley's most recognized and image-conscious corporate leaders. Zuckerberg is Facebook's co-founder, CEO, CEO, and most powerful shareholder, and sanctioning the federal government would be a rare rebuke for him and for the tech-giant's historic ethos, moving fast and breaking things. [19659007] The FTC often does not address executives when a company's business practices violate the privacy of web users. However, critics said that the target of attacking Zuckerberg could send a message to other tech giants saying that the agency is prepared to blame senior executives for their companies' repeated data breaches.

"The days as if this were an innocent platform to quote Mark in a large-scale enforcement effort would keep this house in check," said Roger McNamee, an early investor in the firm and one of Zuckerberg's key critics.

Earlier investigations by Facebook, the US government opted for Zuckerberg the hardest exam. Documents received by the FTC in accordance with the Open Recordings Act show that the agency had straightened Zuckerberg directly on its last deal with Facebook in 2011. Otherwise, Zuckerberg might have received fines for future data breaches

Asked after the negotiations, Facebook said in a statement, "[s] hope 'to hope for a reasonable and fair solution." The FTC declined to comment on this story express.

The FTC began investigating Facebook in March 2018 Cambridge Analytica, a political consulting firm, reports that data from approximately 87 million users of the social networking site was not properly accessed. The US government's investigation focused on whether Facebook violated a FTC 2011-brokered agreement that prompted the company to improve its privacy. Since then, Facebook has admitted a number of additional privacy vulnerabilities, including a license that maltreated millions of users Passwords on Instagram, his photo sharing service.

Zuckerberg, who appeared before the congress last year, attempted to take responsibility for a number of his company's recent missteps, including the entanglement of Facebook with Cambridge Analytica. "I founded Facebook, run it and I'm responsible for what's happening here," he told the legislature. The Facebook boss, however, continued to claim that the company had not committed a "breach of the consent" that it had made at the FTC.

The statement that the now more than a year old federal investigation could force Facebook to make significant concessions, including the payment of a fine in the billions, reported the post before. This could also result in new obligations for Zuckerberg. One of the ideas raised may be required by him or other executives to regularly validate the company's privacy practices to the Board of Directors, said two persons familiar with the matter and increased supervision by the FTC.

It is unclear whether the FTC and Facebook are still considering such a requirement or if they have reached agreement on these or other open issues. However, Facebook has fought hard to shield Zuckerberg in the negotiations, said one of the sources familiar with the investigation. Either Facebook or the FTC would choose to move away from the talks, resulting in the matter being taken to court.

The idea of ​​holding Zuckerberg to account – and even being punished for allegedly mistreating Facebook data with data – has found political approval in Washington. Democratic senator Richard Blumenthal (Conn.) Said on Thursday that the company's chief executive "not only knew Facebook was breaking consumer privacy, he publicly signed the legitimate concerns."

"Holding Mark Zuckerberg and Other Top Facebook managers who are personally responsible and liable for further misconduct would send a strong message to senior executives across the country: they pay a substantial price for bypassing the law and deceiving consumers. "

Some of FTC's own decision-makers have also expressed their support for executing penalties when their companies are investigated, and in a memo dated May 2018, Democratic Commissioner Rohit Chopra said the agency must" hold individual executives to account for violations in which they were involved, even though those persons were not mentioned in the original orders. "He did not mention Facebook by name and he did not respond to a request for comment.

Zuckerberg was largely unaffected by negotiations with the FTC If he does, it will not be the first time, more than eight years ago, when the FTC put together its initial agreement with Facebook, the agency's staff weighed to personally address Zuckerberg, an early, unpublished and undated draft the approval decision of the FTC against Facebook, received by mail through a motion for Freedom of Information Act, Zuckerberg explicitly named respondents – meaning that he would have been subject to increased federal oversight and the risk of fines and other penalties for future privacy misunderstandings.

In the end, however, the FTC was removed from a release of the order in April 2011, as evidenced by e-mail records received by the agency under open legislation. The agency also considered a provision that was dropped from its early adjustment, which would have forced Facebook to pay the government an unspecified amount. The form of punishment, called "digression," requires a company to recover poorly-received profits. The draft Consent Decree only contained an "xxx" instead of an exact amount, and the language was finally removed when the FTC announced its agreement with Facebook in November 2011.

This time, veterans of the FTC have encouraged the agency to target Zuckerberg directly, even setting him up personally and subjecting him to another federal oversight. David Vladeck, who served as director of the Consumer Protection Bureau at the FTC in 2011, criticized the company this week for "failing to take the initial permit" seriously.

"I hope future names are called Zuckerberg," he said, adding that this "puts pressure on the company to hold the CEO accountable."

FTC brokerage in 2011 with Facebook Demands that the company give more precedence to the data collected to consumers and give them permission before overwriting their existing privacy settings. Also, Facebook should not be misrepresented as to what it does with its users' data while undergoing 20 years of privacy checks.

The discussions between Facebook and the FTC have intensified in recent weeks, as the agency's investigations have passed its first anniversary. Top Facebook officials, including General Counsel Colin Stretch, met in March with individual Democratic and Republican commissioners. According to two other sources who are familiar with the work of the agency but are not authorized to discuss a private investigation,

while the FTC is examining a number of Facebook Attorney General's have started their own investigations. The District Attorney General of the District of Columbia has filed a data protection lawsuit against the company.

Other agencies, including the Securities and Exchange Commission, have investigated Facebook's relationship with Cambridge Analytica. A federal grand jury sent subpoenas to two tech companies with whom Facebook had exchanged data in March, the New York Times reported. The aim of such a criminal investigation remains unclear.


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