In response to the federal court’s recent action, the Federal Trade Commission has formally approved amendments to its 2012 privacy order with Facebook to include the provisions that were incorporated in the settlement the Commission announced with the social network platform in July 2019.
The FTC in July 2019 announced a record-breaking $5 billion settlement with Facebook related to allegations that the company violated its 2012 FTC privacy order by deceiving users about their ability to control the privacy of their personal information. In addition to the historic monetary penalty, the 2019 settlement includes unprecedented new restrictions on Facebook’s business operations and creates multiple channels of compliance. The order requires Facebook to restructure its approach to privacy from the corporate board-level down. The order further establishes strong new mechanisms to ensure that Facebook executives are accountable for the decisions they make about privacy, and that those decisions are subject to meaningful oversight.
Pursuant to the 2019 settlement, the FTC could not amend its 2012 administrative order with Facebook with the updated consumer protections until the federal court entered its order. Judge Timothy J. Kelly entered the order on April 23, 2020. In response, FTC Chairman Joe Simons issued a statement last week on the court’s approval.
The Commission voted 3-2 to modify the 2012 Facebook order with the updated provisions included in the 2019 settlement. Commissioners Rohit Chopra and Rebecca Kelly Slaughter dissented.
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Juliana Gruenwald Henderson
Office of Public Affairs