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(Reuters) – Litigation funding provider IMF Bentham Ltd (IMF.AX) said on Tuesday it was funding a representative complaint against social networking website Facebook Inc (FB.O) over alleged breaches of the Australian Privacy Principles.
The company said it would fund the complaint made to the Australian Information Commissioner against Facebook Australia, Facebook Inc and Facebook Ireland. The complaint is being handled by Sydney-based law firm Johnson Winter & Slattery.
The Australian Information Commissioner has also commenced a separate investigation into the matter, IMF Bentham said, adding a class action may follow depending on the Commissioner’s findings.
Facebook has come under intense scrutiny after it admitted in March to making mistakes in letting 50 million users’ data get into the hands of political consultancy Cambridge Analytica.
The company lost more than $ 50 billion in market value in the week after the allegations emerged that Cambridge Analytica improperly accessed data to build profiles on American voters and influence the 2016 presidential election.
Facebook had said in April that a little more than 311,000 Australian users may have had their information improperly shared with Cambridge Analytica. (bit.ly/2Ejpktb)
Facebook’s Australian arm was not immediately available for a comment.
Reporting by Ambar Warrick in Bengaluru; Editing by Himani Sarkar