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Facebook Faces Trial Over Data Breach Affecting Nearly 30 Million Users

Facebook expects the fine to be in the range of $3-5 billion and has kept aside $3 billion in legal expenses related to the investigation

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FILE - The Facebook logo is seen on a shop window in Malaga, Spain, June 4, 2018. (VOA)

In a setback, a US court has rejected Facebook’s claims to block a lawsuit against it in a data breach that affected nearly 30 million users in September last year.

According to a report in Seeking Alpha on Monday, US District Judge William Alsup in San Francisco dismissed Facebook’s request, saying claims that Facebook was negligent and failed to secure users’ data as promised can go forward, and discovery should move “with alacrity” toward trial.

In September, Facebook admitted that unknown hackers exploited three bugs to steal the personal details of 50 million users — later adjusted to 30 million.

Turkey’s Personal Data Protection Authority has already fined Facebook 1.65 million Turkish liras ($280,000) over data breach. Nearly 300,000 users in Turkey may have been affected by the data breach.

According to the Turkish watchdog, Facebook failed to timely intervene to take proper technical and administrative measures during the 12-day existence of the bug last September.

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FILE – The logo for Facebook appears on screens at the Nasdaq MarketSite, in New York’s Times Square, March 29, 2018. VOA

According to a statement from Facebook in December, the company had discovered a photo API bug that allowed third-party applications to access the photos of Facebook users.

At the time, Facebook said that the bug “might have exposed the non-public photos of 6.8 million users to around 1,500 apps built by 876 developers”.

In March this year, Facebook disclosed yet another security incident, admitting to storing hundreds of millions of users’ passwords in plaintext, along with plaintext passwords for millions of Instagram accounts.

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Facebook is facing a hefty fine from the US Federal Trade Commission over data privacy scandals

Facebook expects the fine to be in the range of $3-5 billion and has kept aside $3 billion in legal expenses related to the investigation. (IANS)

Next Story

YouTube Fined in Millions Over Kids’ Data Privacy Breach

To combat such repetitive issues, especially involving kids’ privacy, the platform is considering putting all the content for children on the YouTube Kids app that was launched in 2015

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FILE - Silhouettes are seen in front of a Youtube logo, in this picture illustration taken in Zenica, Oct. 29, 2014. VOA

Google has reportedly reached a multimillion-dollar settlement with the US Federal Trade Commission (FTC) over alleged violations of children’s data privacy laws on its content sharing app YouTube.

The settlement comes after an FTC investigation found that Google improperly collected children’s data which is a breach of the Children’s Online Privacy Protection Act, CNET reported on Friday.

However, the Department of Justice has yet to sign off on the details of the fine, hence the exact amount YouTube would lose in the settlement remains unknown.

Earlier in June it was reported that Google could face fines from a late-stage investigation by the federal government into YouTube’s handling of children’s videos, after which the platform said it was considering significant changes to protect its youngest content creators and viewers.

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FILE – Signage is seen inside the YouTube Space LA offices in Los Angeles, California, Oct. 21, 2015. VOA

One of the US Senators, Ed Markey, had also sent a letter to the FTC asking the commission to “hold YouTube accountable for any illegal activity affecting children that the company may have committed”.

In addition to the already existing enquiries on YouTube, the Centre for Digital Democracy and the Campaign for a Commercial-Free Childhood also approached the FTC suggesting penalties for the video streaming giant.

Also Read: Micro-blogging Platform Twitter to Soon Explain Why Certain Tweets are Unavailable

They recommended all children’s data be deleted, civil penalties, plus “a $100 million fund to be used to support the production of non-commercial, high-quality and diverse content for children”, the report noted.

To combat such repetitive issues, especially involving kids’ privacy, the platform is considering putting all the content for children on the YouTube Kids app that was launched in 2015. (IANS)