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March 20, 2018, 12:53 p.m. EDT

Facebook probed by feds after allegations Cambridge Analytica violated user privacy

Facebook under fire amid probe of data firm with Trump ties

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By John D. McKinnon


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Facebook is being dogged by allegations that it failed to protect the privacy of millions of its users.

WASHINGTON — The Federal Trade Commission is probing Facebook Inc. over the use of personal data by an analytics firm tied to President Donald Trump’s campaign, a person familiar with the matter said.

The FTC is looking into whether Facebook /zigman2/quotes/205064656/composite FB +0.62%  violated terms of an earlier consent decree when data of up to 50 million of its users was transferred to Cambridge Analytica, this person said.

However, a person close to Facebook said that the agency’s probe at this point doesn’t appear to be a formal investigation, and the company is expecting to receive a letter from the FTC with questions.

“We remain strongly committed to protecting people’s information,” said Rob Sherman, Facebook’s deputy chief privacy officer, in a statement. “We appreciate the opportunity to answer questions the FTC may have.”

An expanded version of this report appears at WSJ.com.

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