Facebook Parent Meta Sues the FTC Claiming ‘Unconstitutional Authority’ in Child Privacy Case

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MENLO PARK, Calif. (AP) — The parent company of Instagram and Facebook has sued the Federal Trade Commission in an attempt to stop the agency from reopening a 2020 privacy settlement with the company that would prohibit it from profiting from data it collects on users under 18.

In a lawsuit filed late Wednesday in federal court in Washington, D.C., Meta Platforms Inc. said it is challenging “the structurally unconstitutional authority exercised by the FTC” in reopening the privacy agreement.

“Meta respectfully requests that this Court declare that certain fundamental aspects of the Commission’s structure violate the U.S. Constitution, and that these violations render unlawful the FTC Proceeding against Meta,” the company says in its complaint.

The dispute stems from a 2020 consent agreement Meta made with the FTC that also had the social media giant pay a record $5 billion fine over privacy violations.

In May of this year, the FTC said Meta has failed to fully comply with the 2020 settlement and proposed sweeping changes to the agreement that includes barring Meta from making money from data it collects on minors. This would include data collected through its virtual-reality products.

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The FTC had no comment on the lawsuit.

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