Hillicon Valley: Facebook nears settlement with FTC | Lawmakers push bill restricting border agency from selling data | Ocasio-Cortez backs Warren plan to break up tech giants

Hillicon Valley: Facebook nears settlement with FTC | Lawmakers push bill restricting border agency from selling data | Ocasio-Cortez backs Warren plan to break up tech giants
© Greg Nash

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Welcome! Follow the cyber team, Olivia Beavers (@olivia_beavers) and Jacqueline Thomsen (@jacq_thomsen), and the tech team, Harper Neidig (@hneidig) and Emily Birnbaum (@birnbaum_e).


FACEBOOK SAGA NEARS ITS END: Facebook and the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) are negotiating a settlement that would involve greater oversight of the company's privacy practices, according to media reports this week.

On Friday, The Washington Post reported that Facebook had told the agency it was willing to undergo privacy assessments of its business practices as part of a settlement to end the FTC's yearlong probe into the company.

Any such concession would reportedly be in addition to a potential record fine against the social network. Last week, Facebook revealed that it was anticipating a fine of up to $5 billion.


Politico first reported that the concessions were part of the negotiations earlier this week.

The settlement has yet to be completed and would still be subject to a vote from the FTC's five commissioners.

The proposal for increased oversight would reportedly include a person appointed by regulators to oversee privacy practices within the company and it would designate Facebook CEO and Chairman Mark ZuckerbergMark Elliot ZuckerbergTwitter removes Trump campaign tribute to George Floyd claiming copyright complaint On The Money: Initial jobless claims drop to 1.9 million | IRS faces obstacles with remaining stimulus checks | Nearly half of Americans have lost income over coronavirus Hillicon Valley: Facebook begins labeling posts from state-controlled media | Chinese and Iranian hackers target Biden, Trump campaigns | Twitter CEO gives M to Kaepernick group MORE as the compliance officer. It could also involve a "privacy committee" within the company consisting of board members and other officials.

Facebook and the FTC declined to comment on the reports.

Read more here.


LET'S WEIGH THE PROS AND CONS: A group of senators on Friday will introduce a bipartisan bill aimed at preventing Customs and Border Protection (CBP) from selling citizens' personal data, in an effort to reduce identity theft and credit card fraud.

The bill, sponsored by Sens. Steve DainesSteven (Steve) David DainesSenate advances conservation fund bill, House introduces companion The Hill's Campaign Report: Biden on the cusp of formally grasping the Democratic nomination Daines wins GOP Senate primary in Montana MORE (R-Mont.) and Gary PetersGary Charles PetersGOP votes to give chairman authority to subpoena Obama officials Democratic senator to skip vote on Obama-era subpoenas Comey, Rice, Clapper among GOP senator's targets for subpoenas amid Obama-era probe MORE (D-Mich.), would close a legal loophole that allows CBP to sell certain personal information to third-party data brokers when people move overseas.

The measure, which is being reintroduced in both chambers, would require CBP to remove personally identifiable information from any manifests produced when Americans move their belongings into or out of the country.

Those documents typically have personal information like residential addresses, Social Security numbers and passport numbers. The information is included when CBP releases certain shipment data, making the sensitive information publicly available.

This has led to some instances of identity theft and credit card fraud.

The bill, which was introduced in 2017 but stalled in the previous Congress, is aimed at safeguarding the personal information of Americans making international moves. It would amend the Tariff Act of 1930 to prevent the disclosure of personal information contained in manifests when CBP releases shipment data.

Read more here.


THERE'S ONE VOTE: Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-CortezAlexandria Ocasio-CortezEngel says he refuses to seek NYT endorsement over Cotton op-ed The Hill's Campaign Report: Republicans go on the hunt for new convention site Trump calls New York Times 'fake newspaper' after headline change MORE (D-N.Y.) is backing 2020 presidential contender Sen. Elizabeth WarrenElizabeth WarrenGeorge Floyd protests show corporations must support racial and economic equality It's time to shut down industrial animal farming The Hill's Morning Report - Protesters' defiance met with calls to listen MORE's (D-Mass.) plan to break up big tech companies.

"The idea itself is something that I am supportive of because taking an antitrust approach I believe is absolutely relevant and it's appropriate to take," the progressive House freshman said in an interview with Politico this week.

Warren's proposal would break up companies like Facebook, Google and Amazon, targeting firms that both own an online platform and participate in its marketplace. Ocasio-Cortez echoed criticisms of such arrangements, arguing that in the case of Amazon, its role as "both the marketplace, producer, seller ... creates an antitrust issue."

The New York Democrat was an outspoken critic of Amazon's plans to open a headquarters near her district in Queens, N.Y. And last month, she announced she had quit Facebook and called social media a "public health risk."

Read more here.


LEVEL UP: Donald Trump Jr.Donald (Don) John TrumpTrump Jr. hits Howard Stern for going 'establishment,' 'acting like Hillary' Trump Jr., GOP senator lash out at Facebook for taking down protest pages on stay-at-home orders Trump jokes he'll 'look into' pardon for 'Tiger King' after asked by reporter at virus briefing MORE on Friday said Facebook is "taking their censorship campaign to the next level" after the company banned from its platform an assortment of individuals the company described as "dangerous."

The president's eldest son asserted in a tweet that Facebook and other big tech firms have engaged in the "purposeful & calculated silencing of conservatives" and it should "terrify everyone."

"Ask yourself, how long before they come to purge you?" Trump Jr. wrote. "We must fight back."

Facebook did not immediately respond to request for comment.

The company on Thursday banned a host of prominent figures it described as "dangerous," including right-wing commentator and former Breitbart News editor Milo Yiannopoulos, conspiracy theorist Alex Jones and Nation of Islam leader Louis Farrakhan.

The bans, which extend to Facebook's image-sharing platform Instagram, include neo-Nazi and former political candidate Paul Nehlen and anti-Muslim provocateur Laura Loomer.

Facebook said it decided to ban the figures after an extensive review of their behavior on the platform. The company said all of those banned had contributed to the spread of hatred, whether by calling for violence against people based on their identity, following a hateful ideology, using hate speech or slurs in their "About section," and more.

Nehlen has been kicked off of other social media platforms for spreading anti-Semitic and white supremacist views. Loomer was recently banned from Twitter after using anti-Muslim rhetoric against Rep. Ilhan OmarIlhan OmarPelosi demands Trump clarify deployment of unidentified law enforcement in DC Minority caucuses call for quick action on police reform Amash readying legislation allowing victims to sue officers MORE (D-Minn.).

Read more here.


AN OP-ED TO CHEW ON: Oracle exec: Google's argument ignores explosion in innovation.


A LIGHTER CLICK: Tough but fair.



With Uber's IPO, Dara Khosrowshahi is taking Travis Kalanick's company public. (The New York Times)

For Facebook, 'we banned these extremists' is the new product launch. (Buzzfeed News)

Pornhub wants to buy Tumblr and restore site to former porn-filled glory. (Ars Technica)

FCC alerts consumers to 'one ring' call back scam. (FCC)