Facebook co-founder and CEO Mark Zuckerberg testifies before a House Energy and Commerce Committee hearing on transparency and use of consumer data on Capitol Hill in Washington, D.C., on April 11, 2018. File Photo by Erin Schaff/UPI | License Photo
Aug. 27 (UPI) — Facebook has reached a preliminary settlement with users who sued the social media company in 2018 over the Cambridge Analytica data privacy scandal.
A filing Friday in U.S. District Court in the Northern District of California asked a judge to press pause on the lawsuit for 60 days to allow the parties involved come to terms, Politico reported.
Mark Zuckerberg, CEO of Meta, Facebook’s parent company, and Sheryl Sandberg, the company’s former chief operating officer, were expected to give depositions in the case within that time period.
The court filing didn’t detail the terms of the preliminary settlement, and Meta and the plaintiffs didn’t provide a comment to The Verge.
The Facebook users sued the platform in June 2018, accusing it of violating privacy rules when it shared personal data with Cambridge Analytica and other third parties.
Cambridge University academic Aleksandr Kogan and his company Global Science Research used the quiz app “This Is Your Digital Life” to gather data on 270,000 users — and the users’ friends, who did not participate in the quiz — which it then shared with data mining firm Cambridge Analytica in 2015. The company used the demographic information from 87 million Facebook users to target political advertising.
In March 2018, whistleblower and Cambridge Analytica co-founder Christopher Wylie revealed the data mining company was holding onto Facebook user data without the users’ consent even after Facebook told the company to delete it.
Wylie said the company was initially funded by billionaire Robert Mercer and his boss was former Breitbart founder and White House adviser Steve Bannon.
Wylie said leadership at Cambridge Analytica wanted to fight a “culture war.”
Former President Donald Trump‘s campaign used the services of Cambridge Analytica for the 2016 presidential election.
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