Overnight Tech: Cambridge Analytica whistleblower meets House Dems | SEC fines Yahoo $35M over email breach | Senators unveil internet privacy bill

Overnight Tech: Cambridge Analytica whistleblower meets House Dems | SEC fines Yahoo $35M over email breach | Senators unveil internet privacy bill
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DEMS HEAR FROM CAMBRIDGE ANALYTICA WHISTLEBLOWER: Democrats from the House Judiciary and Oversight Committees interviewed Christopher Wylie, the Cambridge Analytica whistleblower, today in a closed-door hearing.

Members leaving the hearing said they also want to hear from Steve BannonStephen (Steve) Kevin BannonWhy the 'Never-Trumpers' flopped Manhattan prosecutors subpoena Bannon financial documents: CNN Nearly a quarter of Trump's Facebook posts in 2020 included misinformation: analysis MORE, the former White House adviser, and GOP megadonor Robert Mercer, two of the founders of Cambridge Analytica.


Here's what Democrats said in a statement after the session: "Mr. Wylie's statements today demonstrate why it is so important that our Committees prioritize investigating foreign interference in our elections. We need interviews, documents, and hearings without delay. Instead, Reps. Goodlatte and Gowdy have spent their time on repeated investigations of Hillary ClintonHillary Diane Rodham ClintonClintons remember former adviser Vernon Jordan Biden praises Vernon Jordan: He 'knew the soul of America' The parts of H.R. 1 you haven't heard about MORE's emails and holding sham hearings centered on the theory that conservatives are unfairly censored on social media.


"Jared KushnerJared Corey KushnerBiden to speak with Saudi king 'soon' as pressure builds for Khashoggi report Biden to speak with Saudi king ahead of Khashoggi report: report Former Trump officials eye bids for political office MORE, Senior Advisor to President TrumpDonald TrumpSouth Carolina Senate adds firing squad as alternative execution method Ex-Trump aide Pierson won't run for Dallas-area House seat House Oversight panel reissues subpoena for Trump's accounting firm MORE, once credited Cambridge Analytica with the President's victory, but the interview with Mr. Wylie today raises serious questions and concerns about our security. We must do more to learn how foreign actors collect and weaponize our data against us, and what impact social media has on our democratic processes. Cambridge Analytica is not the first company to engage in these types of tactics, nor will they be last if we fail to conduct oversight and investigate this matter thoroughly. We demand that Chairman Goodlatte and Chairman Gowdy hold immediate hearings and call in additional witnesses without delay."


--The Cambridge Analytica scandal prompted Mark Zuckerberg to appear in two separate congressional hearings this month, as lawmakers from both parties lashed out at him for Facebook's handling of the data leak.


What's next: Tomorrow, Wylie will visit with Democrats on the House Intelligence Committee.

"Mr. Wylie has agreed to testify Wednesday as part of our continuing investigation into Russian meddling in our democracy," Rep. Adam SchiffAdam Bennett SchiffHouse Democrats want to silence opposing views, not 'fake news' White House defends not sanctioning Saudi crown prince over Khashoggi What good are the intelligence committees? MORE (D-Calif.), the panel's top Democrat, told The Hill in a statement. "We believe Wylie will further our understanding of Cambridge Analytica's role in the 2016 election, its reported interactions with Russian figures, and how the company used Facebook personal data in their efforts."


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SEC FINES YAHOO $35 MILLION: Altaba, formerly known as Yahoo, agreed to pay a $35 million fine for failing to disclose "one of the world's largest data breaches," the SEC announced Tuesday.

"Although information relating to the breach was reported to members of Yahoo's senior management and legal department, Yahoo failed to properly investigate the circumstances of the breach and to adequately consider whether the breach needed to be disclosed to investors," the SEC said.

The agency said that the company misled investors in not revealing the breach.

Why this is so big: This settlement reportedly marks the first time the SEC has pursued a company for failing to properly disclose a cyber breach.


FACEBOOK WILL ALLOW USERS TO APPEAL CONTENT REMOVALS: Facebook announced today that it will allow users to appeal when their posts are taken down. The company also made its community standards public for the first time.

"First, the guidelines will help people understand where we draw the line on nuanced issues. Second, providing these details makes it easier for everyone, including experts in different fields, to give us feedback so that we can improve the guidelines -- and the decisions we make -- over time," Facebook vice president Monika Bickert wrote in a blog post.


--In related news, YouTube revealed today that it deleted eight million videos in 2017 for violating their content policies.


--Meanwhile, the House Judiciary Committee on Thursday will hear from social media personalities Diamond and Silk on Facebook's attitude towards conservatives. Conservatives are raising concerns that their views are being censored by Facebook. Diamond and Silk are two prominent Trump video bloggers.


STOLEN IDENTITIES ON FACEBOOK: Facebook has hosted data posted by cyber criminals including stolen identities and Social Security numbers.

Motherboard, which first reported on the Social Security numbers, which were publicly posted on Facebook.

Some of the posts selling Social Security numbers had been on Facebook for several years. Motherboard successfully verified some of the identities and numbers posted on Facebook.


--Facebook's response: "We work hard to keep your account secure and safeguard your personal information. Posts containing information like Social Security numbers or credit card information are not allowed on Facebook, and we remove this material when we become aware of it."





SENATORS UNVEIL BIPARTISAN PRIVACY BILL: Sens. John KennedyJohn Neely KennedyMORE (R-La.) and Amy KlobucharAmy KlobucharBill introduced to create RBG monument on Capitol Hill Lawmakers offer gun control bill to end 'boyfriend loophole' Juan Williams: Hypocrisy runs riot in GOP MORE (D-Minn.) introduced their internet privacy bill on Tuesday, just weeks after grilling Mark ZuckerbergMark Elliot ZuckerbergWarren's wealth tax would cost 100 richest Americans billion Who killed the California dream? If you think it was liberals, think again Facebook touts benefits of personalized ads in new campaign MORE over Facebook's data scandal.

The bill would force websites to be more transparent about their data collection practices and to offer users the option to opt-out of being tracked.

"I don't want to hurt Facebook, and I don't want to regulate them half to death, either," Kennedy said in a statement. "But I have a job to do, and that's protecting the rights and privacy of our citizens."


TWITTER PREPS FOR EU DATA LAW: Twitter said on Tuesday that it would be making changes to its privacy policy in order to make its practices more transparent to users. The company said the changes would go into effect on May 25, the same day that the EU's General Data Protection Regulation will be implemented.

"As part of our ongoing commitment to transparency, and in preparation for new data protection laws that take effect next month, we're updating our Terms of Service and Privacy Policy to empower you to make the best decisions about the information that you share with us," Twitter wrote in a blog post.



The National Telecommunications and Information Administration's Commerce Spectrum Management Advisory Committee will hold an open meeting at 9:00 a.m.

The FCC's Broadband Deployment Advisory Committee will hold a meeting at 9:00 a.m.

The Senate Commerce Committee will consider the FTC nomination of Democrat Rebecca Slaughter during an executive session at 9:45 a.m.

The Information Technology Industry Foundation will hold an event on social contracts for data at 1:30 p.m.

The Senate Small Business and Entrepreneurship Committee will hold a hearing on cybersecurity and small businesses at 3:30 p.m.



BuzzFeed News: YouTube hosted graphic images of bestiality on its platform

The Guardian: Facebook in 'PR crisis mode' over Cambridge Analytica scandal

Motherboard: Facebook has hosted stolen identities and Social Security numbers for years

TechCrunch: Instagram launches "Data Download" tool to let you leave

Op-ed: Congress is walking the online privacy tightrope with oversight

Gizmodo: A key player just joined the lawsuit against the FCC to save net neutrality