Zuckerberg’s testimony to test political resolve to deal with big tech

Zuckerberg’s testimony to test political resolve to deal with big tech

Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg will be challenged by the US Senate Judiciary and Commerce Committees on the social media giant’s

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Photo: Reuters/Stephen Lam

Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg will be challenged by the US Senate Judiciary and Commerce Committees on the social media giant’s privacy performance.

The summons come in response to leaked media reports that the political data-mining firm Cambridge Analytica accessed data on

Facebook has struggled to calm a firestorm of criticism from users, advertisers and politicians in both the US and Europe. Mr Zuckerberg formally apologised last week for what he described as a “major breach of trust” and pledged an internal investigation.

Watch out for three things today. First, note to what extent lawmaker questions are politicised. With Cambridge Analytica being partially backed by billionaire Trump financer Robert Mercer, expect questions regarding knowledge of the data breach by conservative investors. Second, watch how Mr Zuckerberg himself handles the questions, as his performance will affect investor confidence in Facebook’s ability to restore consumer trust, following the social media platform’s greatest scandal to date. Lastly, follow up on how Congress responds to the testimony, particularly regarding recommendations of legal action to the Justice Department, calls for new or changed regulatory legislation and the potential connections to ongoing Russia investigation.