People feel powerless to protect their personal data on Facebook

by Dominic Parks April 22, 2018, 3:57
People feel powerless to protect their personal data on Facebook

In a prepared statement, Zuckerberg apologized for his company not doing enough to prevent tools from gathering its users' private information.

The British Parliament's Digital, Culture, Media, and Sports Committee is now conducting an inquiry into Facebook and Cambridge Analytica's misappropriation of user data.

"We just experienced another slice of Facebook's salami tactics", said Thomas Jarzombek, the Christian Democrats' digital policy spokesman.

Why did Cambridge Analytica lie to Facebook?

On Tuesday, Brittany Kaiser appeared before the United Kingdom parliament to give evidence on her former employer, data firm Cambridge Analytica.

Facebook's attempt to limit fallout from a massive data breach hit trouble in Germany on Friday as a privacy watchdog opened a case against the social network and politicians accused its bosses of evasion. The biggest issue seems to be the use of data mining, and the fact that Facebook did nothing to stop the private information of Facebook users from being "mined".

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Facebook Chief Executive Mark Zuckerberg appeared for hearings in front of US lawmakers last week and is now facing pressure from European Union lawmakers to come to Europe and shed light on the data breach involving Cambridge Analytica.

Angus also grilled Chan about media reports that the company was shifting consumer data out of Ireland to keep it out of reach of the new European Union regulations.

Regulators, including the Information Commissioners Office, which is investigating whether Facebook data was illegally acquired and used, must stand ready to take enforcement action - starting with companies whose deliberate actions are harming consumer interests.

Facebook, like other top tech companies, holds thousands of patents, with many other applications pending. Rather than keep on hand a large staff of technology and data experts to monitor companies like Facebook, the agency requires the companies to hire outside accounting and consulting firms, which are paid by Facebook and periodically report back to the F.T.C. Little did users know that the app would not only define their personality traits but also snatch their and their Facebook friends' personal data without asking. Review the permissions given to each app you have connected to Facebook.

Seeking to contain the fallout, Facebook has said it would only allow authorised advertisers to run electoral ads and that these should be clearly labelled. It also would create transparency and control for consumers over their personal data insofar as consumers would have access to the volumes of personal data collected about them. Just 10% trusted Facebook to put things right for its users itself. The data Cambridge Analytica used came from a Cambridge researcher who developed a quiz that also sucked up information from users and their friends on Facebook.

Be vigilant every time you are asked to log in to apps or online services with your Facebook account. The algorithm looks at education level, travel history, home ownership, zip code, the number of devices a user logs in with, and other data to estimate an individual's socioeconomic level. But Facebook prohibits this kind of data to be sold or transferred "to any ad network, data broker or other advertising or monetization-related service".

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