London, July 11: Facebook! Keep half a million pounds (660,000 dollars) ready as Britain's data regulator will fine you for failing to protect users' data. This follows an inquiry into whether personal information had been misused by campaigns on both sides of Britain's 2016 European Union referendum. In a progress report, the Information Commissioner's Office (ICO) said, the company had failed to be transparent about how people's data was harvested by others.
The investigation by ICO focused on the social media giant since earlier this year, when evidence emerged that an app had been used to harvest the data of tens of millions of Facebook users worldwide.
Facebook has admitted that up to 87 million users may have had their data hijacked by British consultancy firm Cambridge Analytica, which was working for US President Donald Trump's 2016 campaign.
Cambridge Analytica, which denies the accusations, has since filed for voluntary bankruptcy in the US and Britain.
In May, Facebook Chief Mark Zuckerberg apologized to the European Parliament for the harm caused by a huge breach of users' data and by a failure to crack down on fake news.