Feds Are Investigating Data Deals Facebook Struck With Several Big Tech Firms

Feds Are Investigating Data Deals Facebook Struck With Several Big Tech Firms

Bay Area social media giant Facebook is reportedly under criminal investigation for its data-sharing deals with other tech companies.

"We are cooperating with investigators and take those probes seriously", a Facebook spokesman told the Times on Wednesday.

As part of the investigation, a NY grand jury has subpoenaed two well-known smartphone makers for records related to the investigation, according to the report. But given the subpoenas, prosecutors seem to be looking at special arrangements Facebook made with companies to give them access to users' data (sometimes without consent), despite platform changes in 2014 that restricted the practice.

Facebook's disclosure was included in 747 pages of documents given to Congress in response to hundreds of questions about data privacy posed to Zuckerberg by members of Congress about Cambridge Analytica, which improperly accessed personal information on up to 87 million Facebook users.

"It has already been reported that there are ongoing federal investigations, including by the Department of Justice".

The Times report emerged on the same day that Facebook saw widespread outages on its apps, including Facebook Messenger, Instagram and WhatsApp.

Federal prosecutors are investigating data-sharing deals struck between Facebook and makers of mobile computing devices
APFederal prosecutors are investigating data-sharing deals struck between Facebook and makers of mobile computing devices

The exact focus of the investigation, however, remains unknown.

Facebook has defended the deals.

"We've provided public testimony, answered questions, and pledged that we will continue to do so", Facebook said in a statement.

The data sharing deals were reported by the New York Times in June and December of a year ago.

Facebook's data sharing deals are coming under hard scrutiny by American federal investigators.

"This episode has clearly hurt us", Facebook CEO Zuckerberg told Congress past year while speaking about the Cambridge Analytica scandal.

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