Facebook's Data-Selling Arrangements Now Under Criminal Investigation

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What happened: A NY grand jury has ordered two companies that had partnerships with Facebook to hand over records.

According to the Times, Facebook's deals with more than 150 different companies let them "see users' friends, contact information and other data, sometimes without consent".

Manufacturers of mobile devices got an especially sweet deal, according to internal Facebook documents seen by the Times.

The criminal investigation adds to a laundry list of probes since the Cambridge Analytica revelations one year ago placed a spotlight on the company's data and privacy practices.

Federal prosecutors are investigating data-sharing deals struck between Facebook and makers of mobile computing devices
APFederal prosecutors are investigating data-sharing deals struck between Facebook and makers of mobile computing devices

"We've provided public testimony, answered questions and pledged that we will continue to do so", it said in a statement. The Department of Justice began probing the Silicon Valley company after a report showed Cambridge Analytica, a political consulting firm, used the platform to improperly obtained data on 87 million people to help President Donald Trump's campaign.

Federal prosecutors are investigating data-sharing deals struck between Facebook and makers of mobile computing devices.

The grand jury inquiry was on behalf of the United States attorney's office for the Eastern District of NY. Facebook said in July it had received questions from USA agencies including the Securities and Exchange Commission, the Federal Trade Commission and the FBI, and was cooperating.

The deals sparked outrage - and have come under sharp scrutiny - since they were revealed in a investigation by the Times a year ago. Numerous partnerships ended years ago, the Times noted, but the deals with Amazon and Apple were ongoing at the time of the story. Facebook did not respond to questions about the focus or nature of the investigation.

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