Facebook’s Zuckerberg Declines To Testify Before British Parliament

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Facebook Chief Executive Mark Zuckerberg is declining to testify before the British Parliament concerning the Cambridge Analytica user data scandal, opting instead to send other executives.

Fortune said Facebook told the committee Zuckerberg has asked one of his deputies to provide evidence to U.K. lawmakers in person. The social media company said it would either be sending Mike Schroepfer, chief technology officer, or Chris Cox, chief product officer, both of which Facebook said would be “well-placed” to answer questions on the matter.

Meanwhile, CNN reported Zuckerberg will testify before U.S. Congress. In an interview with CNN last week, the CEO said he would be happy to answer questions if he were the best person with the most knowledge to do it. Fortune noted earlier this week that Senate Judiciary Committee Chair Chuck Grassley called on the executive to appear before Congress on April 10 for a hearing on data privacy. To make matters worse, the Federal Trade Commission announced it has launched an inquiry into the data scandal — all of which has negatively affected Facebook’s shares. On Monday (March 26), the company’s valuation was lower than where it started the year.

The social media giant has been embroiled in a scandal for more than a week now after it was revealed that Cambridge Analytica, the political consulting company, accessed the data of 50 million Facebook users, wielding the information to target voters in the run-up to the U.S. election.

According to Fortune, last week Parliament’s Digital, Culture, Media and Sport Committee asked Zuckerberg to provide oral evidence, saying in a letter penned by Chair Damian Collins that officials at the social media company have misled lawmakers in the past about the risks in its data-sharing practices. It is “now time to hear from a senior Facebook executive with the sufficient authority to give an accurate account of this catastrophic failure of process,” the letter stated.

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