Mark Zuckerberg considered saying in a 2017 speech that Facebook was looking into “organizations like Cambridge Analytica,” according to details from his indictment by the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission. .
But he decided to remove the reference to the political consulting firm that collected the data of millions of Facebook users ahead of the 2016 US presidential election, a previously unreported move that could have spilled over into the future. adding fuel to shareholder accusations that Zuckerberg and other executives withheld information from the public about one of its biggest privacy scandals.
When Meta executives learned about the issues involving Cambridge Analytica and how they responded, that’s been the focus of lawsuits in California and Delaware, in which shareholders accuse executives of misconduct. breach of fiduciary duty and consumers allege mishandling of their personal information.
Attorneys for both plaintiffs declined to comment.
Facebook, now organized as Meta Platforms Inc, ordered Cambridge Analytica in 2015 to delete inappropriately collected user information and said it considered the issue resolved by March 2018. when new concerns arise.
Zuckerberg, Meta’s chief executive, reiterated that timeline and noted that he was advised not to name organizations in the speech, according to a transcript of the February 2019 affidavit obtained by Reuters in This month passed a public records request.
Sections redacted, it’s not clear why Zuckerberg suggested mentioning Cambridge six months before further allegations were made about it. Zuckerberg in the affidavit also admitted to asking colleagues in January 2017 to evaluate Cambridge’s claims about its influence in elections.
Meta declined to comment on the deleted reference other than to say that its case with the SEC has been resolved for more than three years.
Media reports in March 2018 suggested that Cambridge continued to leverage Facebook’s data, prompting a government investigation regarding the data protection practices Facebook orchestrated in the United States with amount of at least $5.1 billion.
The SEC as part of its settled investigation asked Zuckerberg in affidavit about a draft speech he wrote about Russia possibly interfering in the 2016 election by abusing Facebook services.
In the draft obtained by the SEC, Zuckerberg suggested that: “We are looking at foreign actors including Russian intelligence, actors in other former Soviet countries, and organizations like Cambridge Analytica. .”
A transcript of his live-streamed remarks shows him saying: “We are looking at foreign actors, including additional groups of Russia and other former Soviet states, as well as organizations like campaigns.”
Zamaan Qureshi, policy advisor to consumer advocacy group The Real Facebook Oversight Board, said the deposit would raise users’ suspicions about Meta.
“The obfuscation efforts only go so far as to show that it’s hard to trust the company’s management,” Qureshi said.
(Except for the title, this story has not been edited by NDTV staff and is published from an aggregated feed.)
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