Facebook users can get a piece of its $725 million privacy payout

Woman holds smartphone showing Facebook

Facebook parent company Meta has agreed to pay out $725 million in a settlement over its use of personal data in the Cambridge Analytica scandal — and a big chunk of Facebook’s user base is eligible to collect some of the money.

Anyone who had a Facebook account at any point between May 24, 2007, and Dec. 22, 2022, can sign up to receive a share of the settlement payment.

The full payout will be split between every valid user who makes a claim, so the exact amount any one user can expect to receive isn’t clear. While Facebook has lost ground to competing social platforms such as TikTok in recent years, there are still some 250 million active Facebook users in the U.S.

Users who want to make a claim can sign up at facebookuserprivacysettlement.com.

Meta’s payment settles a lawsuit that claimed it improperly harvested personal information to target political advertisements during the run-up to the 2016 election.

Cambridge Analytica, a data firm with connections to Donald Trump ally Steve Bannon, improperly gathered data on some 87 million Facebook users from a Facebook-connected app. It used that data to inform political ad targeting, particularly to promote votes for then-candidate Donald Trump.

The FTC ultimately imposed a $5 billion penalty on Meta, at the time still called Facebook, following a suit over the scandal.

By Scripps News.

Correction: A previous version of this story at ScrippsNews.com implied those who started a Facebook account after Dec. 22, 2022 would be eligible for the settlement. This story has been updated.

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