Facebook Inc. agreed to pay a fine of 500,000 pounds ($644,000) to end a U.K. privacy probe in the wake of the Cambridge Analytica scandal.
The social network giant has withdrawn its appeal of the fine levied last year, settling the case without any admission of guilt, the U.K. Information Commissioner’s Office said in a statement on Wednesday.
We are pleased to hear that Facebook has taken, and will continue to take, significant steps to comply with the fundamental principles of data protection,” James Dipple-Johnstone, deputy commissioner at the ICO said. “With this strong commitment to protecting people’s personal information and privacy, we expect that Facebook will be able to move forward and learn from the events of this case."
Data belonging to 87 million Facebook users may have been misused and were handed to Cambridge Analytica, a consulting firm that worked on Donald Trump’s U.S. presidential campaign.
Facebook said it was pleased to have reached a settlement and the company wished it had done more to investigate the claims about Cambridge Analytica in 2015.
“We made major changes to our platform back then, significantly restricting the information app developers could access,” said Harry Kinmouth, Facebook’s Associate General Counsel.
“Protecting people’s information and privacy is a top priority for Facebook, and we are continuing to build new controls to help people protect and manage their information.”
Harry Kinmonth, Facebook’s associate general counsel, said that the ICO “has stated that it has not discovered evidence that the data of Facebook users in the EU was transferred to Cambridge Analytica” by researcher Aleksandr Kogan.