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FTC Settles with Facebook Over Privacy Violations

Source: Christian Monitor

Posted on 15 Aug 2012 by Neilson

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FacebookThe FTC and Facebook have reached a deal over alleged privacy violations dating to 2009. But unlike Googe, which earlier this week agreed to pay the FTC $22.5 million, Facebook won't be fined a penny.

Just two days after Google agreed to pay a record $22.5 million fine for violating a 2011 FTC consent decree, the FTC has approved the terms of a second settlement – this time with Facebook. According to the FTC, in 2009 Facebook made significant privacy changes to its interface without adequately informing users. In addition, the FTC has charged, Facebook shared some user details with third-party advertisers.

Under the terms of the settlement, Facebook, which has not admitted any wrongdoing, will allow the government to audit its privacy practices every other year for 20 years, the AP has reported.

"The settlement requires Facebook to take several steps to make sure it lives up to its promises in the future," the FTC wrote in a statement, "including by giving consumers clear and prominent notice and obtaining their express consent before sharing their information beyond their privacy settings, by maintaining a comprehensive privacy program to protect consumers' information, and by obtaining biennial privacy audits from an independent third party."