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Facebook, Experts Respond to FTC Settlement

PRIVACY LAW—U.S.

November 30, 2011

In a blog post, Facebook founder and CEO Mark Zuckerberg announced the creation of two new chief privacy officer positions as part of an effort to address a proposed eight-point settlement with the Federal Trade Commission (FTC). Erin Egan has been named chief privacy officer, policy, and will lead the company's "engagement in the global public discourse and debate about online privacy and ensure that feedback from regulators, legislators, experts and academics from around the world is incorporated into Facebook's practices and policies." Michael Richter has been named chief privacy officer, products, and will ensure that Facebook's "principles of user control, privacy by design and transparency are integrated consistently" into the company's product development. Meanwhile, Computerworld reports that some experts do not think the FTC settlement was robust enough. One analyst said that as long as the company adheres to the FTC's policies, "they can now duck any outside criticism about the privacy policies by pointing to the FTC and saying, 'Hey, we're doing everything they've told us to do.'"
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