Hashtag Trending – Microsoft now worth $1 trillion; Facebook breaks privacy laws in Canada; Facebook prepares fine by FTC

Microsoft hit $1 trillion in valuation; Canada highlights Facebook’s weak privacy policies; Facebook prepares to be fined by the FTC.

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It’s all the tech news that’s popular right now. Welcome to Hashtag Trending. It’s Friday, April 26th, and I’m your host, Tom Li.

Trending on Google, Microsoft has joined the trillion dollar club following Apple and Amazon. After releasing its Q3 earnings report yesterday, the technology giant saw its stock price increase to $130, exceeding $1 trillion in valuation. For now, it has superseded Apple as the most valuable public trading company in the world. Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella attributes the company’s growth to strong performance in the cloud sector, although it has seen improvement in all its other businesses as well.

Trending in Canada, an investigation by the Office of Privacy Commissioner of Canada has revealed that Facebook has failed to obtain valid and meaningful consent of installing users, and that it had inadequate safeguards to protect user information. The report says that Facebook ignored recommendations to improve its privacy policy, which was not meant for meaningful data protection. Be sure to read the full report and ITWC’s extensive coverage of the story linked in our transcript.

In the same vein, Facebook has set aside $3-$5 billion in preparation for a fine from the FTC. According to the MIT Technology Review, the FTC is investigating Facebook for breaking a privacy consent ruling in 2011 and its involvement in the Cambridge Analytica case. If Facebook is struck by the fine in full, it would be the biggest fine ever issued by the FTC. Relative to Facebook’s annual $56 billion revenue, the fine would still be significant, but likely won’t heavily damage the company. The investigation is still ongoing and has yet to reach a meaningful conclusion.

That’s all the tech news that’s trending right now. Hashtag Trending is a part of the ITWC Podcast network. Add us to your Alexa Flash Briefing or your Google Home daily briefing. I’m Tom Li, thanks for listening.

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Tom Li
Tom Li
Telecommunication and consumer hardware are Tom's main beats at IT World Canada. He loves to talk about Canada's network infrastructure, semiconductor products, and of course, anything hot and new in the consumer technology space. You'll also occasionally see his name appended to articles on cloud, security, and SaaS-related news. If you're ever up for a lengthy discussion about the nuances of each of the above sectors or have an upcoming product that people will love, feel free to drop him a line at [email protected].

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