Facebook shares sink on report of possible FTC injunction
The Federal Trade Commission is reportedly considering seeking a preliminary injunction against Facebook which would prevent it from linking together its Instagram, WhatsApp and Messenger apps.
The possible FTC action could come as early as next month, if it occurs at all, amid antitrust concerns over the way Facebook has been seeking to tie together its family of messaging products, according to the Wall Street Journal.
News of the possible federal action sent Facebook shares down 3.8 percent Thursday afternoon, to $194.53.
An FTC injunction might seek to prevent Facebook from further pursuing any goals to integrate its apps — a project that Facebook announced in January as government regulators were discussing a potential breakup.
Facebook’s controversial plans would unify the messaging infrastructure of its apps — which together have nearly 5 billion users — as well as incorporate end-to-end encryption for all communications.
The fear is that such an integration would hurt the ability of Facebook’s rivals to compete, the report said. Regulators also worry that once Facebook merges aspects of its products, it would make the company more difficult to split up.
Earlier this week, Facebook rejected Attorney General William Barr’s plea for the social media giant to help law enforcement officials more easily access encrypted messages.
The heads of WhatsApp and Messenger said in a letter that “backdoor” government access would “be a gift to criminals, hackers and repressive regimes.”
Source : Nicolas Vega Link