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Facebook Asks Court To Intervene In EU Antitrust Probe Over Violation Of Employee Privacy: FT

Facebook Inc. (NASDAQ: FB) is asking the General Court in Luxembourg to intervene in the European Union's antitrust investigation against the company on grounds of violating the privacy of its employees, according to a Financial Times

Benzinga · -

Facebook Inc. (NASDAQ:FB) is asking the General Court in Luxembourg to intervene in the European Union's antitrust investigation against the company on grounds of violating the privacy of its employees, according to a Financial Times report Monday.

What Happened

The EU requested broad information beyond the scope of the investigation, the social media giant has alleged, people familiar with the matter told the Financial Times.

The regional bloc has reportedly asked Facebook for documents that contain keywords such as “big question,” “for free,” and “not good for us.” 

The Mark Zuckerberg-led company claims these terms are too wide and are likely to ensnare private information of its employees. 

Tim Lamb, associate general counsel for competition at Facebook, said the EU’s request encompasses documents that are irrelevant to the investigation but could compromise “highly sensitive personal information such as employees' medical information, personal financial documents, and private information about family members of employees.”

Why It Matters

Facebook has already provided 1.7 million pages of documents, including internal emails, to the bloc, the Financial Times noted. The EU investigators claim they are following routine procedures and aren't interested in personal details. 

The Menlo Park, California-based company has also been under investigation by the United States Federal Trade Commission for over a year on antitrust matters.

Zuckerberg, along with CEOs of Amazon.com, Inc (NASDAQ:AMZN), Alphabet Inc (NASDAQ:GOOGL) (NASDAQ:GOOG) and Apple Inc (NASDAQ:AAPL), is due to appear in front of the House Judiciary Committee on Wednesday in an antitrust probe.

Price Action 

Facebook shares closed nearly 1.2% higher at $233.50 on Monday and added another 0.4% in the after-hours session.

Photo courtesy: Anthony Quintano on Flickr