'Mark Zuckerberg may have known more about Facebook's controversial privacy practices than the company previously let on.
A number of internal emails uncovered by Facebook show Zuckerberg's connection to potentially problematic privacy practices at the company, the Wall Street Journal reported, citing sources close to the situation.
The emails surfaced as part of Facebook's effort to respond to a continuing federal privacy investigation.
News of the emails caused Facebook shares to drop sharply by 2.5 percent to $173.64 on Wednesday afternoon.
Many Facebook officials are now concerned that if the emails were released to the public, they might be harmful to the firm, primarily from a public-relations standpoint, according to the Journal.
One of the email exchanges dates back to April 2012. In it, Zuckerberg asked about an app that claimed to have the ability to scrape data from tens of millions of Facebook users and make the data public, regardless of those users' privacy settings, according to the Journal.
Zuckerberg asked whether Facebook should do anything to stop this kind of data collection.
Notably, the exchange did not include any suggestion that Facebook would look into the broader issue of user data collection from developers.
Facebook eventually suspended the app that was harvesting data, but did not investigate the broader issue, according to the Journal.
When the email was sent, the FTC's consent decree had been announced, but it had not yet gone into effect.'
Read more: Facebook shares drop after internal emails reveal Mark Zuckerberg may have known about firm's controversial privacy dealings
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