Federal Trade Commission and Facebook are negotiating a record, multibillion-dollar fine for the company’s privacy lapses
Apparently, the Federal Trade Commission and Facebook are negotiating over a multi-billion dollar fine that would settle the agency’s investigation into the social media giant’s privacy practices. The fine would be the largest the agency has ever imposed on a technology company, but the two sides have not yet agreed on an exact amount. Facebook has expressed initial concern with the FTC’s demands. If talks break down, the FTC could take the matter to court in what would likely be a bruising legal fight.
The Federal Trade Commission is supposed to be the US government’s top Internet privacy cop. But a new Government Accountability Office report report raises questions about whether the agency has the resources and authority it needs to protect consumers. In the past decade, the FTC has filed just 101 enforcement actions regarding Internet privacy. While nearly all of the actions resulted in settlements that required companies to take action, in most cases the FTC didn’t have the authority to issue fines.
Members of Congress are fed up with the state of cellphone coverage in the United States and they weren’t afraid to lodge their complaints personally — with the leaders of some of the country’s biggest wireless networks. As Sprint and T-Mobile went to Capitol Hill to defend their $26 billion proposed merger, lawmakers buttonholed T-Mobile’s chief executive, John Legere, and Sprint’s executive chairman, Marcelo Claure, on the frustrating inability to get a cell signal in many parts of the country, particularly in rural areas.