Mark Zuckerberg makes privacy a priority – when he buys real estate

The Facebook CEO buys homes through a LLC and a wealth management firm, and requires agents to sign NDAs
May 04, 2019 03:00PM

Mark Zuckerberg may be under fire for failing to protect the privacy of Facebook users, but he takes extraordinary measures to protect his own while expanding his personal portfolio of homes (Credit: Getty)

Mark Zuckerberg may be under fire for failing to protect the privacy of Facebook users, but he takes extraordinary measures to protect his own while expanding his personal portfolio of homes.

The 34-year-old CEO of Facebook has tried to hide his property purchases through a limited liability company and a firm that manages investments for wealthy clients, and he also requires real estate agents who work for him to sign non-disclosure agreements, the Wall Street Journal reported.

Most recently, Zuckerberg last winter bought two private estates with 600 feet of waterfront in the Lake Tahoe area through a LLC called Golden Range and Iconiq Capital, a wealth management firm, according to public records. He paid a total of $59 million for the two parcels, which together span nearly 10 acres, and he may buy a third parcel across the street.

Real estate agents who worked with Zuckerberg on the Lake Tahoe purchases signed confidentiality agreements that prohibited them from disclosing him as the buyer and publishing property photos online.

The measures are one part of the Facebook founder’s long track record of trying to protect privacy through assembling surrounding properties and his preference for underwhelming, foliage-wrapped houses.

In Palo Alto, Zuckerberg and his wife Priscilla Chan paid about $7 million for a five-bedroom home in 2011 and subsequently bought four neighboring homes, which they now plan to raze and replace with smaller structures. In Hawaii, where Zuckerberg owns more than 700 waterfront acres on the island of Kauai, he drew criticism for wanting longtime residents to move off two acres of his vast property.

At another home he owns in San Francisco’s Noe Valley, neighbors rallied together to complain about his security detail illegally taking up two parking spots outside his home.

“I’m sure you all agree that it can be cumbersome living next to Zuck,” said the letter, which was circulated among neighbors in the area in 2016, to galvanize neighbors to complain about the permanently parked SUVs.

A spokesperson for Zuckerberg said they’ve since changed security measures. [WSJ] – Mike Seemuth