Report: Facebook nears privacy settlement with FTC

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SAN FRANCISCO (AP) — A published report says Facebook is nearing a settlement with federal regulators that would require the online hangout to obtain approval from its users before making changes that expose their profiles and activities to a wider audience.

The Wall Street Journal reported Thursday that Facebook has agreed to make the changes to resolve a nearly 2-year-old investigation by the Federal Trade Commission. The Journal cited unnamed people familiar with the situation.

Facebook declined to comment, and FTC officials didn’t immediately return calls.

The Journal says that if the settlement is approved by FTC’s commissioners, it would require Facebook to get explicit consent from its 800 million users before changing its privacy settings. Facebook would also submit to government reviews of its privacy practices for 20 years.