Facebook leak hints at its defense against a government-ordered breakup

Facebook is under intense regulatory pressure, and it appears to be bracing itself for the worst. The Wall Street Journal says it has obtained a document outlining Facebook’s defense if the government orders a breakup that would unload Instagram and WhatsApp. The social media giant would reportedly argue that a split would be a “complete nonstarter” based on officials’ past actions — or lack thereof.

According to the leak, Facebook would contend that its acquisitions of Instagram and WhatsApp passed FTC scrutiny without objections, leading it to pour massive amounts of money into both projects as it integrated them into its operations. A breakup would require spending billions and running separate systems that reduced security and hurt the user experience, Facebook would claim.