Former Director: FTC Will Become More Inclined to Impose Penalties on Facebook

Zuckerberg's appearance will be livestreamed to the public after angry EU lawmakers objected to initial plans to host the hearing behind closed doors

David Vladeck, the former director of the Bureau of Consumer Protection at the Federal Trade Commission (FTC), claimed the FTC will be more likely to “impose a significant civil penalty on Facebook,” every time new scandals come out.

“The more unauthorized sharing that comes out, the more the FTC is going to be inclined to impose a significant civil penalty on Facebook,” Vladeck declared. “This company from what I’ve seen has disregarded a consent decree and behaved in a way that is inimical to consumers’ interest… You shouldn’t be able to lie to people.”

“Facebook has not really explained how it obtained consent for the sharing of this data,” he explained. “It may be they see [device-makers] as first parties, but they’re plainly not under the consent decree.”

Vladeck made the comments in response to reports that Facebook provided “at least 60” phone manufacturers, including Apple, Amazon, and Microsoft, “extensive” user data.

According to the Washington Post, “Vladeck said additional penalties could include a court-ordered monitor of Facebook’s business practices, injunctions against particular ways of using of consumers’ data or heightened monitoring by the FTC.”

Facebook, however, maintains their position that they did nothing wrong.

In a statement, Facebook’s Vice President of Product Partnerships Ime Archibong expressed, “While we agreed with many of their past concerns about the controls over Facebook information shared with third-party app developers, we disagree with the issues they’ve raised about these APIs.”

“In the early days of mobile, the demand for Facebook outpaced our ability to build versions of the product that worked on every phone or operating system. It’s hard to remember now but back then there were no app stores,” Archibong declared. “So companies like Facebook, Google, Twitter and YouTube had to work directly with operating system and device manufacturers to get their products into people’s hands. This took a lot of time — and Facebook was not able to get to everyone.”

“To bridge this gap, we built a set of device-integrated APIs that allowed companies to recreate Facebook-like experiences for their individual devices or operating systems. Over the last decade, around 60 companies have used them — including many household names such as Amazon, Apple, Blackberry, HTC, Microsoft, and Samsung,” the statement continued. “All these partnerships were built on a common interest — the desire for people to be able to use Facebook whatever their device or operating system.”

Charlie Nash is a reporter for Breitbart Tech. You can follow him on Twitter @MrNashington, or like his page at Facebook.