SAN FRANCISCO — The Federal Trade Commission is considering seeking a preliminary injunction against Facebook to prevent the social network from integrating several of its messaging services, according to three people with knowledge of the matter.
The agency has discussed how the Silicon Valley company is stitching together the technical infrastructure underlying WhatsApp, Instagram and Facebook Messenger, said the people, who spoke on the condition of anonymity because the talks are confidential.
The F.T.C. is weighing whether such an integration would make it harder to potentially break up Facebook, they said, especially if the agency determines that the company’s acquisitions of some of those apps reduced competition in social networking. The agency has not made a final decision about what to do, the people said.
The F.T.C. and Facebook declined to comment. The potential injunction was earlier reported by The Wall Street Journal.
Mike Isaac reported from San Francisco, and Cecilia Kang from Washington.
This is a developing story and will be updated.