Facebook Allows Manufacturers Like Samsung, BlackBerry, And Apple Access To User Data
- Author: Terrell Bush Jun 05, 2018,
Jun 05, 2018, 0:05
"Contrary to claims by the New York Times, friends' information, like photos, was only accessible on devices when people made a decision to share their information with those friends".
Lawmakers on both sides of the Atlantic were quick to pounce on Facebook (FB) after the New York Times reported late Sunday that the company shared personal data from its users with dozens of device makers, including Apple (AAPL) and Samsung (SSNLF).
The agreements allowed the social media company expand its reach and let the phone makers offer customers popular Facebook features.
The company has been under intense scrutiny in the past few months after it became public that British political consulting firm Cambridge Analytica had accessed private information of 87 million Facebook users.
Facebook's vice president of product partnerships at the social network, Ime Archibong contests the report, stating that this incident is far from Cambridge Analytica's debacle.
"You might think that Facebook or the device manufacturer is trustworthy".
While the reporter appeared to have willingly given access to his Facebook data, the fact that the responses from his friends look to have been sucked up by BlackBerry's software is worrying, as the reporter's friends may not have agreed to such data syphoning by a non-Facebook service.
Archibong said these cases were "very different" from the use of data by third-party developers in the Cambridge Analytica case. "And our partnership and engineering teams approved the Facebook experiences these companies built", Archibong said.
Facebook still doesn't believe that it has done anything wrong, believing that its agreements with the manufacturers are all that it needs to maintain some sort of legal protection for itself. The publication says Facebook has been sharing information about users with major phone makers-including Apple, Microsoft, and Samsung-for over a decade. The company claimed that once it discovered Cambridge Analytica's transgression, it immediately took swift action to rectify the situation.
"Consumers have the right to know how their personal information is being used; and the companies we trust with our information have a critical responsibility to protect it", she added.
Kogan developed an app that required people to sign in using their Facebook accounts - and that then harvested data about those users and their friends, that was then used by Cambridge Analytica to develop psychological profiles of USA voters ahead of the 2016 presidential election. And Facebook stressed in a blog post it is "not aware of any abuse by these companies". We've already ended 22 of these partnerships.
"This was flagged internally as a privacy issue", Sandy Parakilas, who was leading third-party advertising and privacy compliance for Facebook's platform at the time, said.