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Local legal action taken against Facebook over privacy practices

CHICAGO — The Cook County State's Attorney has filed a consumer fraud lawsuit against Facebook and the political data-mining firm Cambridge Analytica.

The lawsuit was filed Friday in a Cook County circuit court.

It claims the two companies violated an Illinois fraud law deceiving Facebook users — and that Facebook failed to protect its users' privacy and misrepresented how their data would be used.

The suit also alleges Cambridge Analytica misappropriated data to influence the outcome of the 2016 presidential election. The firm worked on President Trump's 2016 presidential campaign and gained access to the personal data of more than 50 million Facebook users.

Additionally, Illinois Attorney General Lisa Madigan joined the chief law enforcement officers for 36 other U.S. states and territories in demanding to know when Facebook learned about a huge breach of privacy protections.

The officers said in a letter Monday to CEO Mark Zuckerberg that users' trust in the social media platform is "broken."

The attorneys general are asking how Facebook monitored what these developers did with all the data they collected and whether Facebook had safeguards to prevent misuse.

They also asked Zuckerberg for an update on how Facebook will allow users to more easily control the privacy of their accounts.

Meanwhile, the Federal Trade Commission has opened an investigation into Facebook's privacy practices.

The social media giant is facing questions following reports that data from 50 million users landed in the hands of political firm Cambridge Analytica without their consent.

The FTC says it takes the recent reports "very seriously."

Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg took out full-page ads in several British and American newspapers over the weekend to apologize for a breach of trust, and promised to do better.

Read the Cook County lawsuit here:

Cook County State's Attorney sues Facebook by WGN Web Desk on Scribd