(Reuters) – The U.S Federal Trade Commission (FTC) has started looking into disclosures that Facebook Inc’s internal company research had identified ill effects from its products, the Wall Street Journal reported on Wednesday, citing people familiar with the matter.
Officials are looking into whether Facebook research documents indicate that it might have violated a 2019 settlement with the agency over privacy concerns, according to the report.
Facebook and the FTC did not immediately respond to Reuters requests for comment.
The company has come under fire after Frances Haugen, who worked as a product manager on the civic misinformation team at Facebook, revealed that she was the whistleblower who provided documents underpinning a recent WSJ investigation.
In September, the Journal published a report that focused on data suggesting that Instagram had a harmful effect on teenagers, particularly teen girls, and that Facebook had made minimal efforts to address the issue.
Facebook shares were down 0.6% in premarket trading.
(Reporting by Eva Mathews in Bengaluru; Editing by Shailesh Kuber)