Statement from Alastair Mactaggart, Chair and Founder of Californians for Consumer Privacy, on $5 Billion Facebook Settlement with the FTC

July 25, 2019

SACRAMENTO –Californians for Consumer Privacy Chair and Founder Alastair Mactaggart today released the following statement about the record $5 billion settlement issued by the Federal Trade Commission for Facebook’s unprecedented consumer privacy violations.

“Let’s put Facebook’s $5 billion settlement with the FTC into perspective: it’s the deal of the century for them.

The sum represents less than 1 month of the company’s revenues.  Less than 3 months of its profits.  Facebook has over $50 billion of cash and short term investments, so paying $5 billion to buy a get-out-of-jail-free card not just for its actions in the Cambridge Analytica debacle, but for any other privacy violations that occurred before the settlement, makes total sense for Facebook.  The company can continue to monetize personal information from virtually all global consumers with very little restrictions, virtually all the time, whether or not they are Facebook users, and whether or not they are logged in, and Mark Zuckerberg faces very little incentives to change that model.

We are eager for the California Consumer Privacy Act to take effect next year.  Come January, Californians will be able to tell Facebook they don’t want their information sold; and tell the other websites and services they use that they don't want every site they visit, to send back a record of that visit to Facebook.”

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