30/04/2018 11:43 SAST | Updated 30/04/2018 11:43 SAST

Facebook Reveals Strong Profits Despite Cambridge Analytica Scandal

The company is making more money than ever.

Facebook has revealed that despite two congressional hearings, a major data leak involving at least 80 million users and the hashtag #DeleteFacebook trending on Twitter, the company is making more money than ever.

In publishing its quarterly financial earnings Facebook revealed that its revenue has grown to 11.9 billion dollars (£8.5 billion) for the first three months of 2018, a 49% increase on the same three months from last year.

Stephen Lam / Reuters

The company's net income also increased by three billion dollars to 4.9 billion for the quarter. The vast majority of this will have come from adverts that you see on the social network.

What's perhaps most surprising about the figures is that despite the hashtag #DeleteFacebook trending on social media, Facebook has actually seen a rise in both its daily and monthly active users.

Over 1.45 billion people now use Facebook every single day and 2.2 billion use it at least every month. Both figures represent a 13% increase over the same period from last year.

During the earnings call 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.

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.

Facebook has over the last number of weeks started rolling out a series of major changes to the way that it handles people's personal data. New privacy tools have been implemented, along with heavy restrictions on the amount of information that third-party apps can gather on you.

Zuckerberg himself has since appeared in front of two congressional hearings, both of which were widely criticised as being major wins for the CEO and founder who had to spend much of his time explaining the basic principles of how Facebook works to those asking the questions.

POOL New / Reuters

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.