Facebook, Mark Zuckerberg’s popular social network, has been fined by the European Commission and will have to pay 110 million Euros for “providing misleading information” during the 2014 acquisition of WhatsApp.
Facebook told the European Commission that at the time there was no way to link a Facebook user account to a WhatsApp account.
In August 2016 the accounts of both services were linked, and the European Commission discovered that Facebook employees were already aware of this possibility in 2014 .
The social networking giant announced that the acquisition of WhatsApp Messenger was completed in October 2014 for $19 billion. For its part, the European Union announced the investigation of Facebook last December 2016 .
Margrethe Vestager, member of the European Commission, spoke about the fine on Facebook:
“Today’s decision sends a clear message to companies that they must comply with all aspects of the European Commission’s rules, including the obligation to provide correct information.
To which he added:
“A proportional and dissuasive fine has been imposed on Facebook. The Commission must be able to take decisions on this type of merger.
From Facebook they just want to settle the issue, acknowledging part of the blame for their mistake:
“The mistakes we made in 2014 were not intentional and the Commission has confirmed that they did not affect the outcome of the analysis of the merger between Facebook and WhatsApp. Today’s announcement brings this matter to a close.”
This is not the first time that Facebook has gotten into trouble in Europe. The Federation of Consumer Organisations has already asked the social network to stop sharing user data forcing Facebook to delete any data collected.