The Latest: More class-action suits filed against Facebook

The Latest: More class-action suits filed against Facebook
The Associated Press

WASHINGTON (AP) — The Latest on Facebook’s privacy scandal and Mark Zuckerberg’s congressional testimony (all times local):

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12:30 p.m.

Facebook faces two new federal lawsuits for allegedly violating the trust of the millions of users whose personal data was shared with the data-mining firm Cambridge Analytica.

A California suit filed Monday seeks a court order to halt what it calls Facebook’s unfair and deceptive business practices.

A Delaware case filed Tuesday contends Facebook violated a 2011 consent decree with the Federal Trade Commission. It also names Cambridge Analytica and its business partners as defendants, alleging they committed fraud by using the social network to obtain personal data on at least 80 million Facebook users without their knowledge and consent.

Both are seeking class-action status. Lawyers in the Delaware case say they are aware of about a dozen similar suits. Facebook had no comment, but referred to previous statements that called Cambridge Analytica’s actions a breach of trust.

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10 a.m.

Facebook has begun alerting some users that their data was swept up in the Cambridge Analytica privacy scandal.

A notification that appeared on Facebook for some users Tuesday told them that “one of your friends” used Facebook to log into a now-banned personality quiz app called “This Is Your Digital Life.” The notice says the app misused the information, including public profile, page likes, birthday and current city, by sharing it with the data-mining firm Cambridge Analytica.

As many as 87 million users who might have had their data shared were supposed to get a detailed message on their news feeds starting Monday. Facebook says more than 70 million of the affected users are in the U.S., though there are over a million each in the Philippines, Indonesia and the U.K.

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1:45 a.m.

Experts are questioning whether Facebook is fundamentally changing its relationship with users or just tinkering around the edges of its deep need for user data to sell ads.

CEO Mark Zuckerberg is testifying before Congress on Tuesday and Wednesday in the wake of revelations that pro-Donald Trump data-mining firm Cambridge Analytica scooped millions of Facebook users’ data without their knowledge.

Researchers say it’s unlikely that Facebook will upset its business model, which allows advertisers to precisely target users, even as the company clamps down on the information it passes to app developers.

And Wall Street analysts are counting on Facebook to survive a user revolt, with shares up some 4 percent after a nine-month low hit late last month.

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12:10 a.m.

After privately assuring senators that his company will do better, Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg is undergoing a two-day congressional inquisition that will be very public — and could be pivotal for his massive company.

Zuckerberg visited with senators in closed-door meetings Monday, previewing the public apology he plans to give Congress on Tuesday after revelations that the data-mining firm Cambridge Analytica gathered personal information from 87 million users to try to influence elections.

Zuckerberg will testify before a joint session of two Senate committees on Tuesday and before a House panel on Wednesday.

In prepared testimony released Monday by the House Energy and Commerce Committee, Zuckerberg apologizes for fake news, hate speech, a lack of data privacy and Russian social media interference in the 2016 elections.

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