California AG says Facebook is failing to comply with subpoenas over privacy scandals

The AG says Facebook is "dragging its feet".

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The social media giant Facebook’s non-compliance in an ongoing investigation has pushed the California State into revealing the 18-month probe into the company’s privacy dealings with regards to the Cambridge Analytica Scandal.

The latest court documents filed by the California State Attorney General Xavier Becerra on Wednesday revealed that Facebook was “dragging its feet” and failed to comply with subpoenas demanding the company’s privacy dealings.

Initially begun in 2018, probes such as these are not revealed until “there’s a legal action that makes it public.” Due to Facebook’s non-compliance, the investigators had to officially reveal the investigation opened against Facebook.

“If Facebook had complied with our legitimate investigative requests, we would not be making these announcements today, but our work must move forward,” said Becerra.

While the investigators state that the social media giant refused to comply, Facebook, however, says that it “cooperated extensively.” Nonetheless, the company didn’t address the issue of subpoenas mentioned in the recent court documents.

“We have cooperated extensively with the State of California’s investigation, to date we have provided thousands of pages of written responses and hundreds of thousands of documents,” said Will Castleberry, VP of state and local policy at Facebook.

According to the latest court documents, it was revealed that the state attorney Becerra was now asking the San Francisco County Superior Court to make Facebook comply with their requests for documents such as communication among executives, changes made to the company’s privacy settings and additional documents about the company’s privacy program as well.

Moreover, Facebook was also asked to submit documentation detailing any communication with respect to the various news stories and reports from The New York Times, The Wall Street Journal, The Washington Post, and The Guardian about the Cambridge Analytica scandal.

The AG revealed that the social media giant has shown non-compliance and non-cooperation during the probe by the Federal Trade Commission as well. Also, Facebook hasn’t complied for a complete search into the emails of the company’s CEO Mark Zuckerberg and COO Sheryl Sandberg.

The probe has now started looking into Facebook’s dealings with third parties in regard to access to user data, and particularly, “which apps Facebook granted access to user data despite users restricting access to their information.”

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