Facebook shares have taken a substantial hit following the Cambridge Analytica data breach that was reported at the weekend.
The value of the social media company has fallen by over 7.4% as of 16:00 GMT, with share prices on NASDAQ down from $185 at market close on Friday to $171 as of 11:00 EST. This means that since Friday, Facebook’s market value has decreased over $30bn.
Facebook has faced scrutiny after it was revealed at the weekend that the data firm Cambridge Analytica bought information collected from a third-party app to try and change voting habits. The revelations, brought by a whistleblower, have sparked significant reactions in American and in Europe with questions being raised on how the data could have affected the outcome of the 2016 Presidential Election.
Cambridge Analytica is estimated to have collected information from 50m users for targeted advertising; Facebook had made frequent demands for the information to be deleted from at least 230,000 users as far back as 2015. Wall Street analysts have highlighted that it highlights “systemic problems” with its business model and could incur greater regulatory scrutiny.
Facebook’s fall was the biggest on the NASDAQ 100 as well as the S&P 500. Facebook shares had taken a 4.1% drop following an announcement that the company would prioritise friends and family over companies and media outlets.
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