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Facebook Negotiating Multi-billion Dollar Fine With US Agency: Report

Facebook is currently being probed by the Securities and Exchange Commission, the FTC and the Department of Justice

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Facebook, data,photos
A television photographer shoots the sign outside of Facebook headquarters in Menlo Park, Calif. VOA

Facebook is negotiating a multi-billion dollar fine with the US Federal Trade Commission (FTC) over the social media giant’s past privacy practices.

According to a report in The Washington Post on Thursday, the specific amount is yet to be determined but it would be the largest fine the FTC has ever levied on a tech company.

“If talks break down, the FTC could take the matter to court in what would likely be a bruising legal fight,” said the report.

Facebook confirmed it was in discussions with the FTC but declined to comment further.

Facebook, data, vietnam
This photo shows a Facebook app icon on a smartphone in New York. VOA
 The largest fine ever imposed by the FTC to safeguard consumers’ data was a $22.5 million penalty that Google paid in 2012.

The FTC opened its probe into Facebook in March 2018 after the Cambridge Analytica data scandal that breached the privacy of 87 million users came into light.

“Facebook faces a moment of reckoning and the only way it will come is through an FTC order with severe penalties and other sanctions that stop this kind of privacy misconduct going forward,” Democratic Senator Richard Blumenthal (Connecticut) was quoted as saying.

Consumer advocates have urged the FTC to fine Facebook exceeding $2 billion.

Washington DC’s top prosecutor Karl Racine has also sued Facebook in the first significant US move to punish the firm for its role in the Cambridge Analytica scandal.

Facebook
Facebook, social media. Pixabay

Facebook is currently being probed by the Securities and Exchange Commission, the FTC and the Department of Justice.

In the UK, the company was fined 500,000 pounds over the Cambridge Analytica scandal, the maximum fine the British data regulator can impose.

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Bigger trouble may arise from the Irish data protection regulator, which is investigating Facebook for multiple admissions of security flaws, in what is being seen as the first major test of Europe’s new privacy rules as dictated by the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR). (IANS)

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India: CSC Partners with Facebook to Provide Digital Skill Training to Women Village Level Entrepreneurs

India has made dramatic strides in expanding access to affordable mobile broadband in the last few years

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Facebook, Digital Skills, Women
In the first year of this project, Facebook, in collaboration with CSC Academy, plans to provide tools and digital skills training to more than 250,000 people across over 3,000 villages in 10 states in India. Pixabay

Common Services Centre (CSC), which serves as access point for the delivery of various electronic services to villages in India, on Tuesday announced a partnership with social media giant Facebook to provide digital skill training to women village level entrepreneurs.

In the first year of this project, Facebook, in collaboration with CSC Academy, plans to provide tools and digital skills training to more than 250,000 people across over 3,000 villages in 10 states in India.

“India has made dramatic strides in expanding access to affordable mobile broadband in the last few years. We are excited to partner with CSC Academy to create a programme that will build on this success as well as the outstanding community networks that CSC has built over the years,” Ajit Mohan, Managing Director, Facebook India, said while speaking at the CSC Diwas celebration here.

As part of the project CSC will identify and nominate 5,000 women village level entrepreneurs across 10 states – Jammu and Kashmir, Uttar Pradesh, Rajasthan, Chhattisgarh, Jharkhand, Telangana, Bihar, Kerala, Maharashtra and Tamil Nadu.

Facebook, Digital Skills, Women
Common Services Centre (CSC), which serves as access point for the delivery of various electronic services to villages in India. Pixabay

These women entrepreneurs will be given training sessions on leveraging various Facebook tools to not just build and grow their business but also on how to train people on the ground.

These entrepreneurs will further help build awareness to ensure that the community is able to learn from each other.

CSC along with Facebook will co-create a curriculum (online and offline) around digital marketing skills and online safety in over 14 regional languages.

“CSC has unleashed entrepreneurs across villages in India, many of them women. With the #DigitalBeti programme, our objective is to arm these village level entrepreneurs with similar digital tool kits that large corporations have access to, and unleash their full potential and their ability to create economic opportunities for themselves and their communities,” Mohan said.

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From just 13,000 women village level entrepreneurs in 2014, today more than 73,000 women entrepreneurs are working across 3.66 lakh CSC centres, IT Minister Ravi Shankar Prasad said. (IANS)