Facebook Hit With Record $5 Billion FTC Fine Over Data Breaches

The social network will appoint an independent privacy oversight committee as part of the settlement

The Federal Trade Commission said it had reached a record $5 billion settlement with Facebook on Wednesday over the company’s mishandling of user data. The settlement comes after the social network has been skewered for several privacy issues in the last 18 months — most notably its failure to alert up to 87 million users that their profile information had been accessed without consent by Cambridge Analytica, a political consulting firm.

“Despite repeated promises to its billions of users worldwide that they could control how their personal information is shared, Facebook undermined consumers’ choices,” FTC Chairman Joe Simons said in a release. “The relief is designed not only to punish future violations but, more importantly, to change Facebook’s entire privacy culture to decrease the likelihood of continued violations.”

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Sean Burch

Tech reporter • sean.burch@thewrap.com • @SeanB44