Zuckerberg apologises to U.S. lawmakers on data breach

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It might be the start of a whole new week, but the ongoing Facebook privacy scandal is showing no sign of cooling off. CEO Mark Zuckerberg is testifying before Congress tomorrow, but before that kicks off, Facebook will finally be notifying users who had their data stolen by Cambridge Analytica.

Zuckerberg is due to testify to Congress on Tuesday and Wednesday in the midst of the worst privacy crisis in Facebook's history.

Zuckerberg is scheduled to appear before the Senate Judiciary and Senate Commerce Committees tomorrow, and the House Energy and Commerce Committee the day after.

Facebook has been in troubled waters ever since the Cambridge Analytica's data breach has been reported.

"There is more work to do, but we are committed to confronting abuse and to putting you in control of your privacy", it says.

"We didn't take a broad enough view of our responsibility and that was a big mistake", the statement said.

It took Facebook until September 2017, 10 months after the election, to go public with its first findings on the Russian meddling, which it says appeared in the news feeds of 126 million customers - equal to almost half the adult population of the United States.

"For conservatives like me", Eric Wilson, Marco Rubio's 2016 presidential campaign digital director and founder of LearnTestOptimize.com, recently wrote in a Politico op-ed, "it's not easy to call for increased regulation and antitrust enforcement, but Facebook has shown time and again that its leaders, including Mark Zuckerberg himself, aren't capable of responsibly wielding their huge power and influence in Americans' lives". The users who took the test shared the data of their Facebook friends with the app and Kogan later sold it to Cambridge Analytica, a voter profiling company in the UK.

"The only thing I really share is recipes, if they want to hack me for my recipes go for it", said Facebook user Mary Beth Vanderbilt.

Editor's Note: An earlier version of this story said that Mark Zuckerberg made the rounds in Capitol Hill with his wife Priscilla.


Zuckerberg also addresses the 2016 election, explaining the website's efforts to block "traditional threats" like hacking and malware, and the company's failure to identify or prevent disinformation campaigns and the coordinated use of fake accounts.

Zuckerberg also apologized for being "too slow to spot and respond to Russian interference" during the 2016 USA presidential election. In addition, Zuckerberg was reportedly meeting with other lawmakers Monday in Washington. But it's not at all clear how much Facebook can shift without undermining what makes it one of the world's most profitable companies.

Facebook compiles a wealth of information about each user.

Facebook's logo appears on screens at the Nasdaq MarketSite in New York's Times Square, on March 29, 2018.

Richard Blumenthal, a Connecticut Democrat who sits on both Senate committees, compared the scrutiny of Facebook's data-collection practices by Congress to the landmark 1960s exposé of the US automobile industry that prompted lawmakers to introduce far-reaching safety regulations.

But a larger body of research suggests that Facebook, as well as other social media, tend to reinforce and intensify existing political views by creating an echo chamber of friends and like-minded users.

Facebook Inc FB.O Chief Executive Mark Zuckerberg met US lawmakers individually on Monday and told Congress in written testimony that the social media network should have done more to prevent itself and its members' data being misused.

Digital privacy and consumer protection advocates urged Mr. Zuckerberg to use his congressional appearance to affirm that Facebook plans to adopt General Data Protection Regulation - a series of comprehensive new privacy rules set to take effect across the European Union next month - across its platform worldwide.

Sen. Bill Nelson, Florida Democrat, told MSNBC that the Federal Communications Commission should be involved in Facebook regulation.

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