Facebook indicated that it expected a fine up to $5 billion by the Federal Trade Commission for privacy violations. The FTC is looking into whether Facebook broke its own 2011 agreement to protect user privacy. The company disclosed this amount in its quarterly financial reports. According to the New York Times, this fine would be a milestone for the F.T.C., whose biggest fine for a tech company was $22 million against Google in 2012 for misrepresenting how it used some online tracking tools.
Privacy and data protection are two interrelated Internet governance issues. Data protection is a legal mechanism that ensures privacy. Privacy is usually defined as the right of any citizen to control their own personal information and to decide about it (to disclose information or not). Privacy is a fundamental human right. It is recognised in the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights, and in many other international and regional human rights conventions. The July 2015 appointment of the first UN Special Rapporteur on the Right to Privacy in the Digital Age reflects the rising importance of privacy in global digital policy, and the recognition of the need to address privacy rights issues the the global, as well as national levels.