Published: Wed, July 04, 2018
Global News | By Blake Casey

SEC, FBI Question Facebook Over User Data

SEC, FBI Question Facebook Over User Data

The Post also reported that the agencies investigating Facebook now include the FBI, the SEC, the Federal Trade Commission, and the Justice Department.

"We are cooperating with officials in the US, UK and beyond".

Almost four months after the revelation that Facebook failed to stop data analytics firm Cambridge Analytica from utilizing improperly obtained data of up to 87 million Facebook users, U.S. agencies have remained quiet as to what punishment the company will face, if any.

David Vladeck, a Georgetown Law professor and former director of the FTC's Bureau of Consumer Protection, told The Post that reports of an expanded investigation from several federal agencies does not bode well for Facebook and raises "all sorts of red flags".

Facebook said in March that Cambridge Analytica, a firm that worked for Donald Trump's 2016 presidential campaign, obtained data improperly.

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Christopher Wylie, the whistleblower who first came forward about Cambridge Analytica in March, tweeted that he had spoken to investigators in all the probes.

"We've provided public testimony, answered questions, and pledged to continue our assistance as their work continues", the spokesperson said.

Cambridge Analytica used Facebook data gathered in 2014 by Cambridge University data scientist Aleksandr Kogan.

In 2014, Facebook introduced stricter rules for developers that made it harder for third-party apps to access data from Facebook users and their friends, and also made it easier for users to protect their data and privacy.

As a reminder, Facebook never disclosed that it had discovered Cambridge Analytica siphoning off data of millions of its users in 2015 until the media discovered and reported the incident earlier this year. Accordingly, the FTC takes very seriously recent press reports raising substantial concerns about the privacy practices of Facebook.

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