Social media giant Facebook has filed an appeal against the hefty fine that was imposed by UK’s data watchdog Information Commissioner post its accusations in Cambridge Analytica affair. Facebook says that it has been unjustly fined an extensive £ 500,000 penalty as there was no proof that personal data of UK based users had been compromised during the process. The watchdog had accused Facebook last month of negligence for its failure in not making suitable controls on both its app and developers that amounted to “serious law breach”. Facebook made its appeal on the last day that it could legally challenge the sentence of Information Commissioner of UK.
The scandal broke out when it was publicly revealed that a professor from Cambridge University named Dr. Kogan had used a unique quiz to collect personal details of several million Facebook users without their knowledge. Some of these users’ details were later shared with political consultancy firm Cambridge Analytica that used this data to send political advertisements to these users during presidential elections of 2016 in the United States. It had been reported that personal data of few million UK based users had also been compromised during this breach.
Cambridge Analytica insisted that it only had licensed data of less than half a million people and a detailed probe by ICO Office too did not find any evidence about existence of UK based users. But even then ICO imposed maximum penalty on Facebook based on presumption that its users in Britain too were put to risk due to this negligence and the firm had neglected to address the problem even after learning about it. General Regulatory Chamber Tribunal will consider this appeal by Facebook and give a decision. If the firm does not like the verdict then it can take the case to UK’s Court of Appeal that could drag this affair for few years.