Missouri is investigating Facebook’s business and privacy practices following reports that political consulting firm Cambridge Analytica had obtained personal data about 50 millions of the social network’s users.
Missouri Attorney General Josh Hawley said Monday that his office had issued Facebook (FB) a subpoena seeking information about how the company gathers and safeguards user data. He is investigating whether Facebook accurately discloses how people’s personal information is used.
“There is no excuse for this irresponsible handling of user data,” Hawley said in a statement. “Missourians need to know that they can trust the companies and platforms that have access to as much user information as Facebook does.”
In a statement, Facebook said, “We look forward to responding to Attorney General Hawley’s questions when we receive the details of his request.”
Hawley’s inquiry comes amid withering public and political backlash against Facebook for its role in allowing Cambridge Analytica to access information about its users and to possibly influence the 2016 presidential election campaign. Massachusetts’ attorney general has already said she would investigate Facebook over the matter while a coalition of 37 state attorneys has sent Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg a letter urging him disclose more information about his company’s data collection and security practices.
Meanwhile, the Federal Trade Commission has also said it would investigate .
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Facebook has struggled to defend itself against the privacy uproar. Zuckerberg has tried to make amends in interviews while also buying full-page ads in several U.S. and U.K. newspapers to apologize.