Twitter will pay $ 150 million for privacy settlement

Twitter will pay $ 150 million to settle a privacy lawsuit with the Department of Justice (DOJ) and the Federal Trade Commission (FTC). The settlement, announced today, covers a complaint that Twitter misused members’ email addresses and phone numbers for targeted advertising. In addition to the fine, Twitter must also accept controls over its data privacy program, among other restrictions.

The legal claim alleges that Twitter referred its policies to users between 2013 and 2019, violating both the FTC Act and an order from a previous settlement in 2011. The company encouraged users to add a phone number or email address to allow security measures such as two factor authentication. In fact, however, Twitter has also incorporated this information into ad targeting data. The apologized for the practice in 2019, saying it had “accidentally” injected addresses and numbers into its ad system. The complaint also alleges that during this period, Twitter falsely claimed to be complying with the European Union-US and Switzerland-US Privacy Shield Frames, which restricted the way companies could reuse user data.

“The $ 150 million fine reflects the seriousness of the allegations against Twitter, and the significant new compliance measures that will be imposed as a result of today’s proposed settlement will help prevent further misleading tactics that threaten users’ privacy,” she said. Vanita Gupta. a statement. The FTC targeted Facebook for a similar practice in 2019, imposing a $ 5 billion fine on the company for this and other privacy breaches.

The new compliance measures will require Twitter to maintain a “comprehensive” privacy and information protection program and to conduct regular tests and audits of its safeguards. It must also notify anyone who became a Twitter member before September 2019 of the settlement, after it is approved by a federal court.

Twitter CEO Damien Kieran acknowledges settlement in a blog post and tweet thread. “Our settlement with the FTC reflects Twitter’s pre-existing commitments and investments in security and privacy,” Kieran wrote on Twitter. “We will continue to work with our regulators to ensure that they understand how Twitter’s security and privacy practices are always evolving to the best of their ability.”

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.