Facebook expects a fine of up to $ 5 billion from the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) following a survey of its privacy policies, which represents about a month of revenue for the social networking giant.
To be clear, the amount of the fine is not what the FTC has announced or suggested to date; instead, it is estimated that Facebook will publish Wednesday in its report on the financial results of the first quarter 2019.
In its earnings report, Facebook said the company had set aside $ 3 billion before the agreement with the FTC, which launched a Facebook survey following the Cambridge Analytica scandal.
The investigation concerns the violation of a 2011 agreement between Facebook and the FTC, according to which social networks must obtain the explicit consent of users to share their data.
The FTC opened a Facebook survey last year after revealing that the company had allowed Cambridge Analytica to access access to the personal data of around 50 million Facebook users without their explicit consent.
Now, the two sides are getting closer to an agreement, with Facebook imposing a fine of $ 3 billion to $ 5 billion.
“In the first quarter of 2019, we reasonably estimated a probable loss and recorded a $ 3.0 billion accumulation related to the FTC’s consultations on our platform and user data practices,” said Facebook in its report. profits
“We estimate that the losses in this case range from $ 3.0 to $ 5.0 billion.The problem remains unresolved and there can be no assurance as to the timing or conditions of a final outcome,” he said. Facebook.
If Facebook agrees, the fine will be a record for the FTC, which has never imposed such heavy fines on any technology company and a one-month profit for the social media giant.
The United Kingdom’s Information Commissioner (ICO) also imposed a £500,000 fine on Facebook for the Cambridge Analytica scandal.
The FTC’s Facebook penalty will also surpass the $ 22.5 million civil penalties imposed on Google in 2012 to settle the FTC’s charges of allegedly violating an agreement to improve privacy practices.
Despite all of the recent criticisms of Facebook for poor user data management, Facebook’s user base and revenue are steadily increasing, with the company generating revenue in excess of $ 15 billion in the quarter of 2019 alone. also added 39 million daily active users to its platform.