Facebook revenue and user numbers increase despite data scandal

    File photo dated 25/3/2018 of the logo for Facebook, as the site has begun asking users in the UK to allow the platform to us
    File photo dated 25/3/2018 of the logo for Facebook, as the site has begun asking users in the UK to allow the platform to use facial recognition technology to identify them in photos and videos.

    Facebook has reported strong financial results despite questions over its data privacy practices in the wake of the Cambridge Analytica scandal.

    The social network’s latest quarterly results revealed revenue of 11.9 billion dollars (£8.5 billion) for the first three months of the year, a 49% increase on the same period last year.

    The company’s net income also rose from three billion dollars to more than 4.9 billion (£3.5 billion) for the quarter.

    (Lauren Hurley/PA)
    (Lauren Hurley/PA)

    Despite the hashtag #DeleteFacebook being prominent on social media following the data scandal, Facebook also reported a rise in both its monthly and daily active users.

    More than 1.45 billion people on average now use the service every day, and 2.2 billion every month. Both figures are an increase of 13% on the same period last year.

    The social platform’s founder and chief executive Mark Zuckerberg acknowledged the scrutiny the company was currently under.

    “Despite facing important challenges, our community and business are off to a strong start in 2018,” he said.

    “We are taking a broader view of our responsibility and investing to make sure our services are used for good.

    “But we also need to keep building new tools to help people connect, strengthen our communities, and bring the world closer together.”

    The latest results also revealed the company’s increasing reliance on mobile advertising as a key source of revenue.

    Revenue from mobile ads made up 91% of revenue for the quarter, Facebook said.

    Earlier this week, MoneySavingExpert founder Martin Lewis announced he was filing a defamation lawsuit against the social network over claims that it published scam adverts from criminals using his name.

    On Thursday, the company’s chief technology officer Mike Schroepfer will face questions from MPs before a House of Commons select committee over Facebook’s business practices.

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