September 11, 2019
A federal judge has ordered Facebook to face a nationwide lawsuit seeking damages for allowing third parties to access users’ private data, calling Facebook’s views on privacy “so wrong.”
Reuters reports  this week that a federal judge ordered Facebook to face a nationwide lawsuit seeking damages for allowing third parties to access users’ private data. U.S. District Judge Vince Chhabria in San Francisco said that users could attempt to hold Facebook liable under a number of federal and state laws for allowing app developers and business partners to harvest users personal data without their consent.
The judge rejected Facebook’s claims that its users suffered no “tangible” harm and had no legitimate privacy interest in information they were already sharing with friends on social media. Chhabria commented on this stating: “Facebook’s motion to dismiss is littered with assumptions about the degree to which social media users can reasonably expect their personal information and communications to remain private. Facebook’s view is so wrong.”
A Facebook spokesperson stated that the company considers protecting users information and privacy “extremely important” but believes that its practices were consistent with its disclosures and as a result “do not support any legal claims.” Two of the plaintiffs’ lawyers, Lesley Weaver and Derek Loeser, stated that they were pleased with the judge’s decision and “especially gratified that the court is respecting Facebook users’ right to privacy.”
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