Facebook Expects To Face Largest Ever Civil Fine For User Privacy And Data Breaches

Facebook warned investors Wednesday it expects to face the largest ever civil penalty imposed by the Federal Trade Commission on a tech company for its mishandling of user data, a privacy breach that could cost the social media giant as much as $5 billion. The final number is still yet to be determined, but the company said in its first quarter earnings report it had set aside $3 billion in anticipation of a settlement with the FTC. The statement amounted to Facebook’s first public admission that it expects to face a game-changing fine, one that could reset the regulatory framework of Silicon Valley, which has increasingly come under scrutiny from lawmakers following revelations about data breaches to Cambridge Analytica during the 2016 election.

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