Facebook, the business subsidiary of Meta platform, has agreed to pay $725 million as a penalty to settle a long pending legal battle related to its Cambridge Analytica Data Scandal. The proposed settlement, reported 1st by Reuters, is yet to be approved by San Francisco’s US District Court and might take at least a few more weeks to turn into an executable decision.
To those uninitiated, Facebook(FB) sold its user information to a company named Cambridge Analytica (now defunct in business) and that company engaged some researchers in the year 2014-15 to get the pulse of US Populace on US 2016 Polls through a quiz app named “thisisyourdigitallife” where information such as page likes, DoBs, genders, locations, and their interest in Donald Trump or Hillary Clinton was collected after building their virtual profile.
Cambridge Analytica was found in the year 2013, owned by a British Legal Consultancy Firm, SCL Group.
And as the whole procedure was being conducted for political advertising and without the consent of the social media giant’s users, it was genuinely illegal.
A class action suit was filed in the year 2018, but the Mark Zuckerberg led company shrugged it off in the year 2019 by saying that its 300,000+ consumers who took part in the survey did not have any right to show privacy interest in the content they have generated to be shared with friends and the world via social media. It also mentioned in its reply to the lawsuit that it banned the company in the year 2015 for disobeying its platform policies and also deleted all the data that was collected during the tenure.
Zuckerberg testified before the congress about the data scandal and also appeared for the special scrutiny by United States SEC and UK’s Information Commissioner. The Federal Trade Commission of America imposed a penalty of $5 billion on the messaging platform. But FB found some loopholes and appealed for more time for introspection.
Meta issued a public summary on the case in early 2022 and admitted that it has taken steps to contain the sharing of user info on third party apps.