Facebook shakes up Washington lobbying team amid scandal

Facebook shakes up Washington lobbying team amid scandal
© Greg Nash

Facebook is making key personnel changes at its Washington, D.C. office amid the uproar over the Cambridge Analytica data privacy scandal.

Facebook’s head of policy in Washington, Erin Egan, has opted to step down to focus on her role as the social media giant's chief privacy officer. She has previously split her time between the roles.

Former Republican Federal Communications Commission Chairman Keven Martin, who is currently a Facebook employee, will replace Egan as the company’s interim vice president of U.S. public policy.

“We need to focus our best people on our most important priorities. We are committed to rebuilding people’s trust in how we handle their information, and Erin is the best person to partner with our product teams on that task,” Elliot Schrage, Facebook’s vice president of communications and public policy, said in a statement provided to The Hill.

A Facebook spokesperson said the company believes it is important that its chief privacy officer spend more time focusing on privacy as attention on the topic increases.

Facebook is dealing with scrutiny from lawmakers on Capitol Hill over its relationship with Cambridge Analytica, a British research firm hired by the Trump campaign.

Facebook disclosed in March that the research firm improperly harvested the data of 87 million Facebook users, going against its policies.

Lawmakers have repeatedly criticized the company since the disclosure, pressuring Facebook CEO Mark ZuckerbergMark Elliot ZuckerbergHillicon Valley: Apple approves Parler's return to App Store | White House scales back response to SolarWinds, Microsoft incidents | Pressure mounts on DHS over relationship with Clearview AI Facebook unveils new audio features Hillicon Valley: Biden administration sanctions Russia for SolarWinds hack, election interference MORE to testify before Congress, where he was grilled.