Facebook, 90 million dollars to “forget” cookies

Facebook, 90 million dollars to “forget” cookies

Mark Zuckerberg’s company is willing to pay substantial compensation to close a class action filed in 2012 that accuses it of undue tracking of web activity.

Published on February 16, 2022 by Redazione

Facebook is now called Meta but even with the new name it still has the same problems made up of lawsuits, fines and accusations of violation of privacy or lack of transparency on the terms of use of the social network. To get rid of at least one of these problems, which had been dragging on for almost ten years, Mark Zuckerberg’s company is willing to pay 90 million dollars: that is the amount proposed in compensation to a district court in the Northern District of California. to close a class action in progress since 2012.

So reports Variety, specifying that the court has yet to express itself, accepting or rejecting the plea bargain. Facebook is accused of having used cookies in an unscrupulous way, going beyond the terms of use provided for members of the social network.
The conditions of use, in fact, provided for the tracking of the actions and pages visited until, in a given browser session, the user was “logged in” on Facebook. The activity, however, continued even in the event of log out, through cookies capable of tracking user interactions with the “like” button plugins inserted on websites of various kinds, such as journalistic portals and blogs.

The class action was initially rejected in 2017, at the end of the first instance proceedings, because according to the court, consumers had not proved that they had suffered economic damage or violations of privacy. On appeal, however, the sentence had been overturned in favor of the users. Facebook had appealed, then cashing in the “no” of the Supreme Court. Hence the decision to work towards the plea bargain. In addition to paying 90 million dollars, Meta will have to delete all data collected through “abusive” cookies.

Variety notes that if it goes through, the deal will end up in the US top ten of the highest privacy infringement compensation. But the figure is still far from that, colossal, of the 650 million dollars of the class action closed last year: in that case, Facebook had agreed to compensate one and a half million users for having used biometric technologies for the cataloging of images published online.