Govt issues show-cause notice to Facebook over Indians' data leak

30 March, 2018, 00:48 | Author: Harriet Bell
  • It's easy to hate Facebook, but it's much tougher to quit

Facebook is making some (largely cosmetic) changes to its privacy settings in an effort to provide users with more control over their personal information. Attorneys representing 37 states are also pressing Zuckerberg to explain what happened, and the Facebook CEO, along with the bosses of Alphabet and Twitter have been invited to testify at an 10 April hearing on data privacy.

The social-media giant is under scrutiny for its data-privacy practices following the revelation that Cambridge Analytica scraped data from 50 million Facebook users, which it reportedly used to influence US elections. "So I'm not convinced how much of that was actually really new stuff", Damian Collins, a United Kingdom lawmaker who has summoned Zuckerberg to appear in front of the British parliament, told CNBC Wednesday. Now, a user has noticed that the social media giant is saving records such as texts and calls from a long time particularly from Android devices. It also required Facebook to establish a "comprehensive privacy program", block access to a user's account within 30 days of it being deleted and barred it from making any deceptive claims about its privacy practices.

Among the privacy setting changes is a redesign of its privacy settings for mobile phones so that they'll appear on a single screen, instead of spread across 20 different ones. The company will also clarify the terms of use and what types of apps users have now connected to Facebook.

The move came after a global outrage over breach of user data on social networking platform Facebook.

Many small businesses would have availed of the Partner Categories feature, as they might not necessarily have had a large amount of their own customer data to draw insights from. Earlier this year, Facebook made a change to its newsfeed to prioritize content posted by family and friends, and said it would show fewer links to articles and other types of content.

"We've heard loud and clear that privacy settings and other important tools are too hard to find and that we must do more to keep people informed", chief privacy officer Erin Egan and deputy general counsel Ashlie Beringer said in a blog post. That's where people can go to delete information or download a copy.

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The government has also sent a notice to Cambridge Analytica asking whether it has misused data to profile Indians and influence elections in the country.

Facebook says they offer this feature in order to make it easier to stay in touch with your contacts, without having to add each person individually.

Under Apps Settings on your Facebook profile, once you've edited or deleted third party apps, there are three options at the bottom of the page.

Advertisers would still be able to use third-party data services to measure how well their ads performed by examining purchasing data, Facebook said. These updates are about transparency - not about gaining new rights to collect, use, or share data.

Facebook also said it will propose updates to its terms of service in the coming weeks and update its privacy policy, but it gave no further details.

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