"[HUD] announced today a formal complaint against Facebook for violating the Fair Housing Act by allowing landlords and home sellers to use its advertising platform to engage in housing discrimination," the release said on Friday.
The US Attorney for the Southern District of New York joined HUD in filing a statement of interest at a US District Court earlier in the day on behalf of a number of private litigants challenging Facebook's advertising platform, the release said.
The Fair Housing Act prohibits discrimination in housing transactions including print and online advertisement, according to the release.
Facebook has recently faced backlash from publishers and brands whose content had been banned due to the IT giant's censorship policies.
Moreover, the social network has recently changed its news feed algorithm by downplaying content from digital businesses and highlighting posts by a user's family and friends. The company explained the move by its willingness to return back to its roots, however, publishers affected by the move said they had lost thousands of dollars since their audience has been slashed by the new algorithms.