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Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg testifies before the House Financial Services Committee on Capitol Hill, on Wednesday, October 23, 2019. Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg testifies before the House Financial Services Committee on Capitol Hill, on Oct. 23, 2019. Photo: Diego M. Radzinschi/ALM

A federal judge in Washington, D.C., signed off on a record $5 billion fine imposed by the U.S. Federal Trade Commission on Facebook for allegedly violating federal law and a previous order with its privacy practices.

In an opinion issued Thursday night, U.S. District Judge Timothy Kelly of the District of Columbia approved the settlement and sharply criticized Facebook’s alleged conduct, which stemmed from the Cambridge Analytica scandal. A whistleblower revealed in 2018 that Cambridge Analytica had harvested data from millions of Facebook users without their knowledge or permission and used the information for political ads.

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Jacqueline Thomsen

Jacqueline Thomsen, based in Washington, is a reporter covering D.C. federal courts and the legal side of politics. Contact her at [email protected] and follow her on Twitter @jacq_thomsen.

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