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The American Federal Trade Commission (FTC) is said to be internally divided on the level and magnitude of the consequences for Facebook of various privacy scandals. That’s what The New York Times reports on the basis of three insiders.

The FTC’s investigation began last year, after it became clear that Cambridge Analytica had mistakenly obtained the data of millions of Facebook users. In doing so, the company drew up political profiles, which were to be used to influence elections.

In February it became clear that the FTC was negotiating a fine with Facebook, and that the watchdog is considering imposing its highest fine ever. Facebook itself announced last month that it would take into account a fine of 3 to 5 billion dollars. But the FTC would still have internal discussions about the actual amount of the fine. The watchdog has also not yet decided on the exact size of the sentence.


In addition to discussions about the amount of the financial penalty, it is also discussed to what extent CEO Mark Zuckerberg should be held personally responsible for violating an agreement from 2011. According to that agreement, the social medium must do more to protect the privacy of users. Facebook itself says that Zuckerberg should not be legally responsible for the actions of all its 35,000 employees.

The discussions can still fall apart, according to the American newspaper. However, the negotiations are still ongoing and are expected to be concluded within a few days. Shortly after that there must be an announcement. The research is quite large for the FTC, since it is being watched worldwide. Several parties regard this as a litmus test of how the American government supervises the tech giants in the country.

Both the FTC and Facebook have refused to respond to the reports of The New York Times.


Last week it was reported that the FTC and Facebook have already made agreements about setting up an independent commission for privacy supervision. This committee may include members of the board of directors of the social medium.

According to the agreements, Facebook must also appoint a privacy employee at the highest level of the company. Zuckerberg himself would assume the role of “designated compliance officer”, making him responsible for implementing the company’s privacy policy.

This news article was automatically translated from Dutch to give Techzine.eu a head start. All news articles after September 1, 2019 are written in native English and NOT translated. All our background stories are written in native English as well. For more information read our launch article.