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Facebook ‘Intentionally and Knowingly’ Violated Privacy Law, Say U.K. Lawmakers

Facebook “intentionally and knowingly” violated data privacy and anti-competition laws, according to British lawmakers who have called for new regulations to keep social media companies in check and a formal investigation into Facebook's business practices. The British parliamentarians have been studying Facebook and the spread of malicious content online since 2017. In the report released Monday, they said: “Companies like Facebook should not be allowed to behave like ‘digital gangsters’ in the online world ... considering themselves to be ahead of and beyond the law.” They allege that Facebook was willing to “override its users’ privacy settings” for years as part of a strategy to maximize revenue from sensitive information, and deliberately put competitors at a disadvantage by limiting access to its site and data. They now want to investigate whether the company “is unfairly using its dominant market position in social media to decide which businesses should succeed or fail.” Facebook denied it had broken any British laws.