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The YCEO: Facebook users could receive ‘$17,500 each after data breach’

It would be safe to say that, since the Cambridge Analytica data breach, Facebook has found itself in some pretty hot water. The social media platform, which is the biggest of its kind in the world, has seen its stock price fall as people begin to delete their accounts due to mistrust and mismanagement of their personal data.

Obviously aware of the falling stock, Facebook founder Mark Zuckerburg 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”.

 “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, with one lawyer claiming 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 Dr. Mapp, the 50 million users who had their data harvested by Cambridge Analytics could be entitled to a hefty sum in damages.

 “There are about 50 million users whose data was harvested,” Dr. Mapp told The Sun. “Assuming each one of them brought a claim for compensation for distress caused by the data breach… each individual may be awarded £12,500 ($17,500) as damages.”

Given that Facebook’s value currently sits at $445 billion, if such a claim was ever brought to fruition it could have dire consequences for the company. However, David Barda, a data protection lawyer, said the amount would be significantly less.

“I think a much more realistic figure is £500 ($700) per claimant,” he commented.
 “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.”

So, are Facebook about to face quite possibly the biggest lawsuit in history? Probably not. But, let’s be honest here, it would be great viewing, wouldn’t it?

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