If you were or are a Facebook user between May 2007 and December 2022, you’re likely in for a payday-but you have to submit a claim.
Meta, the parent company of the social network, has agreed to pay out $725 million to settle a long-contested lawsuit over personal data privacy on Facebook.
The class-action suit began after the 2018 Cambridge Analytica scandal but eventually added a litany of other alleged Facebook data dealings, alleging that the platform broke the law by enabling third parties to access users’ content and information without users’ authorization. Facebook admitted no wrongdoing by agreeing to the settlement and says it has changed its user privacy practices.
The portal to submit claims asks for contact information and then asks a couple of brief questions about users’ Facebook accounts. Filling out the entire claim took this writer less than 3 minutes. The page offers a slew of direct deposit options.
Claims are due Aug. 25 and should pay out after the settlement’s final hearing, which is scheduled for Sept. 7. The deadline to opt out of the settlement and retain rights to separately sue Facebook for any of the suit’s privacy claims is July 26.
How much will the settlement’s payouts be? That depends on two things: how many people submit claims and how long a claimant had an account on the platform.
The settlement will distribute “points” to claimants for every month they had an account between May 24, 2007, and Dec. 22, 2022, and then split the money (after lawyers’ fees of up to 25% and cash for the class representatives) based on those numbers. This settlement appears to only apply to US residents.
THERE IS A CANADIAN CLASS ACTION SUIT ALSO
The suit in Canada only applies to residences in B.C., Saskatchewan, Manitoba, Newfoundland and Labrador.
Various damages are between $830 million and $2.1 billion. Any reward would be split among class members after lawyers have taken their cut.