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Facebook, Google Sued Over Failure to Disclose Data on Political Ads

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MOSCOW (Sputnik) – Washington State Attorney General Bob Ferguson has initiated lawsuits against Facebook and Google over their non-compliance with political advertising disclosure laws, the Attorney General's Office said in a press release.

"Attorney General Bob Ferguson filed campaign finance lawsuits in King County Superior Court today alleging Facebook and Google failed to maintain legally required information for Washington state political advertising placed on their online platforms since 2013," the press release published on the website of Washington’s attorney general on Monday reads.

READ MORE: Facebook Reported to Have Handed Users' Private Data Over to 60 Device Makers

Companies are legally required to store information on the sources and payments of political advertising and make it available for public inspection, according to the Attorney General's Office.

People are silhouetted as they pose with laptops in front of a screen projected with a Google logo, in this picture illustration taken in Zenica October 29, 2014. - Sputnik International
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"The information advertisers are legally required to collect includes: the name of the candidate or measure supported or opposed; the dates the advertiser provided the service; the name and address of the person who sponsored the advertising; and the total cost of the advertising, who paid for it (which may be different than the sponsor) and what method of payment they used," Ferguson's office stated.

The attorney said that Facebook and Google did not provide this information on several Washington state campaigns.

The two companies will have 20 days to respond to the lawsuit, according to the press release.

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