Feds Are Investigating Data Deals Facebook Struck With Several Big Tech Firms

Mark Zuckerberg on stage at Facebook's F8 Conference 2014

Mark Zuckerberg on stage at Facebook's F8 Conference 2014

According to the sources, both of these companies had partnerships with Facebook that granted them access to the personal information of its users.

Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg created the partnerships to stave off obsolescence and insulate the massive company from competition.

Facebook admitted in June that it provided dozens of tech companies with special access to user data after publicly saying it restricted such access in 2015. Customers for that reportedly included Amazon, Apple, Microsoft and Sony, each of whom had agreements to see user friends, contact information and other data without consent.

The social network's arrangements allowed Netflix and Spotify to read Facebook users' private messages, the Times reported, citing internal documents.

Last July, Facebook began facing a widening inquiry from the federal government, with three federal agencies and the Department of Justice looking into how the political-consulting firm Cambridge Analytica obtained the personal data of up to 87 million Americans.

The investigation is being overseen by United States attorney's office for the Eastern District of New York, and a grand jury has been convened, The NY Times reports that the focus of the investigation remains unclear for now.

We are cooperating with investigators and take those probes seriously Weve provided public testimony, answered questions and pledged that we will continue to do so. News of the subpoena comes at a bad moment for Facebook. Facebook did not respond to a request for comment. Facebook said in July it had received questions from US agencies including the Securities and Exchange Commission, the Federal Trade Commission and the FBI, and was cooperating.

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