Following the illegal use of over 87 million Facebook users’ data by Cambridge Analytica, a digital consultancy linked with the Trump presidential campaign, the social media giant may be facing a litigation which will compel it to pay each affected Facebook user $17,500 in damages, a report by Frostnow claims.
Since the Cambridge Analytica data breach incident, the social media platform has seen its stock price fall as people reportedly begin to delete their accounts due to mistrust and mismanagement of their personal data.
Obviously aware of the falling stock, Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg took to his account to issue an apology, in which he promised that the company would put right their errors and "build a better service for the long term".
He said: "We have a responsibility to protect your data, and if we can't then we don't deserve to serve you, " he wrote.
"I've been working to understand exactly what happened and how to make sure this doesn't happen again. The good news is that the most important actions to prevent this from happening again today we have already taken years ago. But we also made mistakes, there's more to do, and we need to step up and do it.
"I started Facebook, and at the end of the day, I'm responsible for what happens on our platform. I'm serious about doing what it takes to protect our community.
"While this specific issue involving Cambridge Analytica should no longer happen with new apps today, that doesn't change what happened in the past.
"We will learn from this experience to secure our platform further and make our community safer for everyone going forward. I want to thank all of you who continue to believe in our mission and work to build this community together.
"I know it takes longer to fix all these issues than we'd like, but I promise you we'll work through this and build a better service over the long term."
However, things might get worse before they get better, the sum of damages may be more than $17,500 as another report by VT news says that a lawyer claims that victims of the data breach could get their hands on a serious amount of cash.
Law professor Maureen Mapp said that the social media giant could be hit with a bill of up to $880 billion.
According to Mapp, the users who had their data harvested by Cambridge Analytica could be entitled to a hefty sum in damages.
If Mapp’s claim was ever brought to fruition it could have dire consequences for the company.
Nevertheless, David Barda, a data protection lawyer, reportedly said the amount would be significantly less.
"I think a much more realistic figure is £500 ($700) per claimant.
"The amount of compensation will depend on the level of distress suffered, but Facebook could be facing claims of up to £500 ($700) per Facebook user if those users were able to demonstrate their distress,” Barda said.
NAIJ.com previously reported that an oil billionaire supporter of former President Goodluck Jonathan reportedly hired SCL, Cambridge Analytica’s parent company, to paint President Muhammadu Buhari bad in the buildup to the 2015 elections.
A report by Guardian UK revealed that fixers hired by the billionaire in support of the Jonathan campaign hacked into Buhari’s personal data.
Cambridge Analytica’s role is reputed as one of the influential factors responsible for the outcome of the US presidential election and the Brexit vote of 2016.
A Nigerian oil billionaire whose identity was not revealed reportedly committed a large amount of money in order stop Buhari from winning the 2015 presidential election.
The reports also claimed that the fixers for the Jonathan campaign hacked into Buhari’s medical and financial records, in a desperate attempt to scare the electorates and changed their decisions to vote for President Buhari.
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