Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg was personally named in a lawsuit filed in Washington on Monday, alleging that he played a direct role in setting the stage for the Cambridge Analytica privacy scandal.
The U.S. capital’s attorney general argued that Mr. Zuckerberg was closely involved in envisioning a framework that would allow a UK-based consulting firm to collect data on 70 million U.S. Facebook users.
In 2018, a whistleblower revealed that Cambridge Analytica had used the data for political purposes, including attempts to garner support for Donald Trump.
“Zuckerberg is not just a personality on Facebook; he is personally involved in almost every decision of the company,” Washington Attorney General Carl Resin wrote in the lawsuit.
He added that Mr Zuckerberg’s control was baked into the structure of the company, where the founder and CEO had a majority voting share.
Mr. Resin’s office sued in 2018 for practicing Facebook’s data privacy as part of an ongoing lawsuit.
Facebook’s parent company Meta did not immediately respond to allegations of a new lawsuit, but spokesman Andy Stone noted on Twitter that a judge had previously rejected Resin’s bid to add Mr Zuckerberg as a defendant in the privacy case.
U.S. authorities have described Facebook as a “historic” 5 billion fine in the wake of the scandal, and also required Facebook to increase privacy protections, provide detailed quarterly reports on compliance with the agreement and an independent oversight board.
Since the Cambridge Analytica scandal broke, Facebook has removed access to its data from thousands of apps suspected of abusing it, restricted the amount of information available to developers in general, and made it easier to calibrate restrictions on users sharing personal data.
(Except for the title, this story was not edited by NDTV staff and was published from a syndicated feed.)