The European Commission has fined Facebook (NASDAQ: FB) €110 million for providing incorrect or misleading information during the Commission's review of the social media giant's roughly $22 billion acquisition of WhatsApp in 2014. During its investigation, the Commission found that, contrary to Facebook's statements, the technical possibility of automatically matching Facebook and WhatsApp users' identities existed when the acquisition took place in 2014, and that Facebook staff were aware of such a possibility.
Facebook acknowledged its negligence and waived its procedural rights to have access to the Commission's file and to an oral hearing, a move that saved it from a fine that could have been much worse. The Commission can impose a penalty up to 1% of the aggregated turnover of a company. For Facebook, that works out to roughly €249 million for 2016.