Meta, the parent company of Facebook, has agreed to pay $725 million to settle a class-action lawsuit over its privacy practices. The lawsuit accused Facebook of allowing Cambridge Analytica, a former British political consulting firm, to harvest the personal data of 87 million users without their consent.
Meta to pay $725 million in Facebook privacy settlement
The data was allegedly used to target voters in the 2016 U.S. presidential election and other campaigns. The scandal sparked public outrage and congressional hearings, and prompted Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg to apologize and promise to do better.
The settlement covers anyone in the U.S. who had a Facebook account between May 2007 and December 2022. Eligible users can apply for their share of the settlement by Aug. 25, either online or by mail. The amount of the payment will depend on how many users file claims and how long they had Facebook accounts.
Meta did not admit any wrongdoing as part of the settlement. A spokesperson for the company said: “We pursued a settlement as it’s in the best interest of our community and shareholders.”
The settlement website, Facebookuserprivacysettlement.com, provides more information on how to apply and what documents are required. Users who want to protect their privacy on Facebook are advised to review their settings and limit the access of third-party apps to their data.