Cyber Risk

PwC had cleared Facebook's privacy practices in leak period

FILE PHOTO: A 3D-printed Facebook logo is seen in front of displayed stock graph in this illustration photo, March 20, 2018. REUTERS/Dado Ruvic/File Photo

(Reuters) - Facebook Inc’s privacy practices were cleared by auditing firm PricewaterhouseCoopers LLP in an assessment completed last year of the period in which data analytics consultancy Cambridge Analytica gained access to the personal data of millions of Facebook users.

Facebook had established and implemented a comprehensive privacy program and its privacy controls were operating with sufficient effectiveness to provide reasonable assurance to protect the privacy of covered information, PwC said in a report submitted to the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) dated December 2017 on the FTC website.

The report was an assessment of the period from Feb. 12, 2015 to Feb. 11, 2017.

The Wall Street Journal earlier reported on Thursday on the PwC assessment submitted to the FTC. PwC declined to comment when contacted by Reuters.

Facebook has been under scrutiny from lawmakers across the world since disclosing that the personal information of 87 million Facebook users wrongly ended up in the hands of Cambridge Analytica, a Britain-based firm hired by Donald Trump for his 2016 U.S. presidential election campaign.

“We remain strongly committed to protecting people’s information. We appreciate the opportunity to answer questions the FTC may have,” Facebook Deputy Chief Privacy Officer Rob Sherman told Reuters in an emailed statement on Thursday.

Facebook Chief Executive Mark Zuckerberg appeared for hearings in front of U.S. lawmakers last week and is currently facing pressure from European Union lawmakers to come to Europe and shed light on the data breach involving Cambridge Analytica.

Reporting by Kanishka Singh in Bengaluru; Editing by Amrutha Gayathri