Facebook’s Sheryl Sandberg Brushes Off Massive Data Privacy Fail: ‘We Were Way Too Idealistic’

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After weeks of remaining conspicuously out of sight, Facebook Chief Operating Officer Sheryl Sandberg told NPR’s Steve Inskeep that she doesn’t know if companies other than Cambridge Analytica exploited users’ private data without their consent.

“We don’t know,” she said, leaning into a black leather swivel chair at the company’s headquarters in Menlo Park, Calif., on Thursday.

Sandberg said Facebook has launched an investigation and audit to determine whether user information has been compromised by other firms.

“As we find those, we’re going to notify people,” she said.

“We really believed in social experiences. We really believed in protecting privacy. But we were way too idealistic. We did not think enough about the abuse cases,” she said.

“We know that we did not do enough to protect people’s data,” Sandberg said. “I’m really sorry for that. Mark is really sorry for that, and what we’re doing now is taking really firm action.”

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