Faceook Fine

The Australian government could fine Facebook as much as $529 billion for the role it played in the Cambridge Analytica data breach.

In a March 9 press release, the Australian Information Commissioner announced it filed a suit against the social media giant due to its “serious and/or repeated interferences with privacy in contravention of Australian privacy law.”

“We consider the design of the Facebook platform meant that users were unable to exercise reasonable choice and control about how their personal information was disclosed…Facebook’s default settings facilitated the disclosure of personal information, including sensitive information, at the expense of privacy,” Australian Information Commissioner and Privacy Commissioner Angelene Falk said.

“We claim these actions left the personal data of around 311,127 Australian Facebook users exposed to be sold and used for purposes including political profiling, well outside users’ expectations.”

Under Australia’s Privacy Act 1988, Facebook could be fined as much as $1,700,000 per alleged contravention. If applied to each of the 311,127 exposed Australian accounts, the total fine would be $528,915,900,000. In comparison, Facebook was fined $5 billion by the United States government and £500k by the United Kingdom government for its involvement in the Cambridge Analytica scandal.