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DC attorney general sues Facebook over Cambridge Analytica

Controversy over Facebook data access

Washington — The attorney general for the District of Columbia is suing Facebook for allowing data-mining firm Cambridge Analytica to improperly access data from as many as 87 million users.

The lawsuit was filed Wednesday by Karl Racine, attorney general for the nation's capital. The suit alleges that Facebook misled users about the security of their data and failed to properly monitor third-party apps. 

The action appears to be the first from a U.S. prosecutor since revelations about were first reported in March. The scandal led to hearings in Congress, after which and Facebook changed what sorts of data it lets outside developers access.

Facebook pushes back on report about sharing user data

However, the company's privacy controls seem to be breaking down yet again. The New York Times reported on Wednesday that Facebook gave large companies including Amazon, Netflix, Spotify and Bing access to user data of the type that it had previously denied making available. 

In a recent case, a software flaw affected nearly 7 million users, leading to their photos being exposed to a much wider audience than they had intended.