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Zuckerberg Congress testimony on Facebook data set for April 11

05 April, 2018, 00:45 | Author: Melinda Barton
  • The nameplate of political consultancy Cambridge Analytica is seen in central London Britain

Facebook's CEO will testify at House committee on April 11th on the misuse of 87 million Facebook profiles by selling user information.

The social media giant is under investigation by authorities in the US, UK, and European Union over a reported data incident that allowed political consultancy firm Cambridge Analytica to harvest data from 50 million users. Walden is the committee's Republican chairman and Pallone is the panel's top Democrat.

"This hearing will be an important opportunity to shed light on critical consumer data privacy issues and help all Americans better understand what happens to their personal information online", said Chairman Greg Walden of OR, in a joint statement with ranking panel Democrat Frank Pallone of New Jersey. Their committee is the first of three congressional panels that requested Zuckerberg's testimony to announce a hearing date.


Zuckerberg had said in recent interviews that he was "open" to testifying in relation to questions over how Cambridge Analytica, a United Kingdom -based data analysis firm, was able to acquire the user data of 50 million Facebook users. Cambridge subsequently did work for the Donald Trump campaign, leading to speculation that Cambridge had used the Facebook data in a psychographic ad-targeting campaign. Ted Cruz's failed presidential campaign and Ben Carson, the famed neurosurgeon who also ran unsuccessfully for president in 2016.

The move by Facebook follows a firestorm over the hijacking of personal information on tens of millions of users by a political consulting firm which sparked a raft of investigations worldwide.

Facebook also said at the time it would investigate all applications that had gotten access to large amounts of data before the firm changed its platform in 2014, would further restrict developers' data access and roll out a tool to let users more easily revoke access by applications to their data. As do most large corporations, Facebook has assembled a potent lobbying operation to advance its interests in Washington.

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