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Facebook Fined $122 Million By E.U For Spreading Misleading Information

The European Commission (EU) haa slammed Facebook with $122 million fine for misleading
information about its $19 billion acquisition of WhatsApp in 2014.

According to the EU, Facebook said that the social network could not link the profiles of
users on WhatsApp and Facebook, which has over one billion users.

But in 2016, WhatsApp updated its terms of service and privacy policy and included in the
update, the possibility of linking WhatsApp users’ phone numbers with Facebook user’s

The Commission after conducting an investigation said that 'the technical possibility
of automatically matching Facebook and WhatsApp users' identities already existed in
2014, and that Facebook staff were aware of such a possibility.”

In a statement released by the European Union’s antitrust chief, Margrethe Vestager, she

'Today’s decision sends a clear signal to companies that they must comply with
all aspects of E.U. merger rules. And it imposes a proportionate and deterrent fine on Facebook. The commission must
be able to take decisions about mergers’ effects on competition in full knowledge of accurate facts.'

In response to the fine,Facebook said it “acted in good faith” during its interactions with the
European Commission, and that it “sought to provide accurate information at every turn.”

The statement added that
''the errors we made in our 2014 filings were not intentional and the Commission
has confirmed that they did not impact the outcome of the merger review.

'Today’s announcement brings this matter to a close''
The EU sanction comes days after Facebook
received a 150,000-euro fine on Tuesday by a French data watchdog for failing to prevent its users’ data being accessed by advertisers and
Last week the Italian antitrust authorities levied a 3 million-euro fine on WhatsApp for allegedly obliging users to agree to share their personal
data with Facebook

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