Meta Platforms, formerly known as Facebook, has hit another roadblock in its ongoing battle with the U.S. Federal Trade Commission (FTC)

over privacy concerns. The latest ruling by the Washington, D.C.-based U.S. Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit has determined that Meta cannot postpone the reopening of the FTC’s investigation into alleged privacy breaches by Facebook while the company pursues legal action contesting the FTC’s authority.

In its order, the appeals court dismissed Meta’s arguments and found that the company failed to demonstrate a likelihood of success in its challenge against the FTC. The court emphasized that Meta had not met the substantial burden required to warrant an injunction pending appeal.

This ruling follows a similar decision by the same appeals court panel earlier in March, where Meta’s request to pause the FTC’s probe was denied. Despite Meta’s objections, citing a previous $5 billion fine settlement and implemented safeguards, the FTC remains steadfast in its efforts to address privacy concerns, particularly regarding the protection of minors’ data and limitations on facial recognition technology.

The FTC’s actions stem from allegations of Meta misleading parents about the safeguards in place for children, which Meta vehemently denies. In response, Meta launched a lawsuit against the FTC, challenging the agency’s dual role as both investigator and adjudicator, and arguing that proceeding with the FTC’s actions would infringe on its right to a trial by jury.

However, the recent court order reinforces the FTC’s authority to scrutinize Meta’s privacy practices, as emphasized by U.S. District Judge Randolph Moss in a previous decision. Moss emphasized the strong public interest in ensuring adequate privacy controls, indicating that Meta had not sufficiently addressed the FTC’s concerns.

In addition to the privacy probe, Meta faces separate legal challenges from the FTC, including an antitrust lawsuit accusing the company of anticompetitive behavior in the social media market. If the FTC’s claims hold, Meta could be compelled to divest assets such as Instagram and WhatsApp, further complicating its legal battles.

Both Meta and the FTC have refrained from immediate comments following the court’s decision, indicating that the legal battle between the tech giant and regulatory authorities is far from over. As Meta continues to navigate these legal challenges, the outcome will not only shape the future of its privacy practices but also potentially redefine the landscape of the social media industry.