Online Broadband Guide
Online Broadband Guide


Your smartphone was probably sharing your friends’ Facebook data behind your back

Your smartphone was probably sharing your friends’ Facebook data behind your back

The Times found that because of this loophole, a 2013 Blackberry device using a Facebook account with 556 friends could access the data of hundreds of thousands of people without their permission.

When Facebook made it to the headlines earlier this year (no end to those yet...) for its data sharing controversies, Apple CEO Tim Cook publicly said that he would never be in Mark Zuckerberg's situation.

Facebook late Sunday responded to a news report that said the social media giant struck agreements with at least 60 phone and device manufacturers and gave them extensive access to users' personal information.

The deals may have breached Facebook's compliance with a 2011 agreement with the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) ordering the company to keep users' information private.

A top congressional Democrat slammed Facebook over a report alleging the company shared its users' personal data with a range of devicemakers.

Facebook has been taking steps to audit any data abuse it uncovers from the past.

Facebook is under increasing scrutiny from lawmakers, regulators and users around the world over its handling of users' data and the steps it takes to protect their privacy. "Our partnership and engineering teams approved the Facebook experiences these companies built", he added.

As an example of how device makers in the partnership with Facebook have special privileges involving members' data, a reporter for the New York Times logged into Facebook using the Hub app.

"These partners signed agreements that prevented people's Facebook information from being used for any other objective than to recreate Facebook-like experiences", Archibong said in the blog.

In its response to the Times article, Facebook says that with the current dominance of iOS and Android operating systems, it's been "winding down" access of APIs.

In premarket trading Monday, Facebook stock was down about 1.3%.

Beyond cookies, Apple is also pouring cold water on device fingerprinting, a process by which advertisers or data companies collect unique characteristics like specific font types that have been installed, screen dimensions and plugins in order to triangulate identity as a user browses the web.

Facebook quickly rebutted the Times' story in an official blog posting yesterday, stating that such device-specific access was necessary a decade ago when feature phones dominated the market and smartphones had just become available. Among other features, Apple's expanding its basic protections - such as alerting you when a third-party app wants to use your location or photos - to cover the camera, microphone, Safari data, and message history.

There's a lot of background on Facebook's handling of the Cambridge Analytica scandal, and there are predictable comments from Facebook's most frequent critics.

Apple, Amazon, Microsoft, and Samsung were among the companies Facebook reached agreements with, allowing the companies to access users' relationship status, religion, political views, and upcoming events they attend.

"Over and over Facebook has proven itself unworthy of user's trust".

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