Brazil Slaps Facebook With $1.6 Million Fine Over Improper Data Sharing

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Brazil's Ministry of Justice slapped US tech giant Facebook Inc with a hefty charge of 6.6 million reais on Monday for improperly sharing user data with apps

Written By Rishabh Mishra | Mumbai | Updated On:

The Ministry of Justice in Brazil slapped the US tech giant Facebook Inc with a hefty charge of 6.6 million reais ($1.6 million) on Monday for improperly sharing user data with apps.

This comes after the ministry clarifies that their consumer protection department has found that data from 443,000 Facebook users was shared with an app called  "thisisyourdigitallife". The ministry in a statement asserted that the data was being shared for "questionable" purposes.

Facebook responds to Brazil ministry

Facebook in an email response to the ministry said that they are evaluating its legal options regarding the case.

The company said, "We are focused on protecting people's privacy". They also asserted that they had made appropriate changes that restricted the accessibility of  "the information with the App developers". 

Read: Facebook investigating massive data leak of 267 million users

Ministry's accusation on Facebook 

The ministry accused Facebook, the world's largest social networking site, for not providing users with adequate information regarding default privacy settings. They said that the data related to "friends" and "friends of friends" has particularly not been mentioned by Facebook.

Furthermore, the ministry of justice also revealed that they had launched a probe into data breach following the Cambridge Analytica case in 2018. As per reports, Facebook has only 10 days to appeal the decision and the fine should be paid within 30 days. 

Read: Facebook's Libra has 'failed' in its current form: Swiss Finance Minister

Facebook investigates massive data leak 

Around 267 million people were affected by a data breach that shocked Facebook earlier in December. The social media behemoth released a statement saying that it had launched an investigation into the matter.

The database was published on an online hacker forum that apparently belonged to a crime group. The database contained personal information like IDs, phone numbers, names, etcetera. Most of the users targeted in the attack are from the United States. 

Read: Indian Navy bans use of Facebook, smartphones by personnel within naval areas

The database was released online by a group of four men who published the data in a downloadable file on the forum. Comparitech, a company that looks into VPNs, password managers, ID theft protection, antivirus, internet providers, network monitoring, and more has partnered with Facebook to investigate the matter. 

The data was available online for almost two weeks on the forum before it was removed. 

(With Agency Inputs)

Read: Facebook Data Leak: Millions Of Users' Data Stored Out In Open On Amazon Cloud Servers

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