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The FTC approves approximately $ 5 billion



The Federal Trade Commission voted this week to approve about $ 5 billion

Facebook
Inc.

According to the long-awaited investigation of the confidentiality mistakes of the technology giant, according to people who are familiar with the matter.

The vote of 3-2 of the FTC commissioners broke down on the party lines, with the majority of Republicans preparing to support the pact while the Democratic Union commissioners objected, people said. The question has been moved to the civil division of the Ministry of Justice and it is unclear how long it will take to finalize, the person said. The judgments of the Ministry of Justice are part of the FTC procedure, but usually do not change the outcome of the FTC decision.

An agreement is expected to include other government restrictions on how Facebook treats users' privacy. Additional terms of the agreement can not be read immediately.

A FTC spokesman declined to comment as well as the Facebook spokesperson.

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Facebook said on April 24 that it expects to pay up to $ 5 billion to settle the investigation. The resolution was affected by the split between Republicans and Democrats on FTC, with Democrats demanding stricter supervision of the social media giant.

The FTC's investigation began more than a year ago after it reported that the personal data of tens of millions of Facebook users were wrongly found in the hands of Cambridge Analytica, a data company working for President Tramp's campaign for 201

6. The FTC's investigation focuses on whether this oversight violates the 2012 agreement with the agency in which Facebook agrees to better protect the user's personal information.

From the Cambridge Analyst's affair, other privacy mistakes came to Facebook.

The deal would easily go beyond the previous FTC violation charge, a $ 22.5 million fine against Google Inc. in 2012 the Commission has limited powers to impose fines for privacy violations but has wide powers to sanction. offenders.

Facebook shares rose slightly more than 1% in the news, although the amount was $ 2bn more than the company has retained for settlement. The party line solution could expose Republicans to criticism from Democrats and reduce its impact on the Federal Trade Commission, which has sometimes been criticized for being a toothless person in the past. After Facebook pledged billions of dollars to pay the fine, some Democrats criticized the sum as too little.

Facebook and other major technologies are in the ever-shining light in Washington, DC, including the "social summit" organized by the White House on Thursday, when President Trump has repeatedly broken the Silicon Valley for injustice to the Conservatives. Facebook was not invited to attend, nor other technology companies, and before that they said that police platforms regardless of political ideology.

Facebook is also preparing for potential control of its competitive practices. The Wall Street Journal announced last month that the Ministry of Justice is preparing for anti-trust

alphabet
Inc.

Is Google and has the authority to consider

apple
Inc.

while FTC has taken jurisdiction over possible antitrust investigations on Facebook and

Amazon.com
.

Facebook is also preparing for next week's congressional hearings about the proposed Libra crypto club, which is subject to skepticism by President Trump and many regulators.

Privacy Settlement comes when the Federal Trade Commission faces increasing political pressure to take a firmer line against Facebook and potentially other technology companies at a time when European law enforcement agencies are seen as the best world policemen in technological rhythm.

Once the US sum was approved this week, the Federal Trade Commission received a financial sanction higher than what the European Union could seek under its data protection law.

Facebook's first FTS agreement, completed in 2012, resolves the Commission's claims that the company has repeatedly violated its promises of confidentiality. site users, including by sharing their data with advertisers and other third parties.

For example, Facebook-based applications like a TV test can find status or pictures of the user, FTC reports, although Facebook said it will not share unnecessary personal data with applications. Facebook solves the case in part, promising that it will not mislead consumers.

In 2017, Facebook said the personality forecast application collected data from tens of millions of users and shared it with Cambridge Analytica, a political consultancy. The Federal Trade Commission once again found the case, this time armed with its considerable power to punish repeat offenders.

The big ticket fee will hardly satisfy the most stubborn Facebook critics, as the multi-billion-dollar sanctions against big banks after the 2008 financial crisis did not help to reduce Wall Street wrath.

Legislators in both countries are working on new privacy rules for big companies, while many candidates for democratic presidencies want to investigate Facebook's market power. Senator Elizabeth Warren (D., Massachusetts) calls for the company to break up, which was recently backed by Facebook co-founder Chris Hughes.

Write to Emily Glazer at emily.glazer@wsj.com and Ryan Tracy at ryan.tracy@wsj.com

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