Raising fresh concerns about Facebook's privacy protection policies, a New York Times report has exposed how the social network allowed about 60 device makers, including Apple and Samsung, to access personal information of users and their friends. The popular social media company told the Times that it views its device partners as extensions of Facebook itself, making the partnerships immune to some of the privacy limitations set on other third party apps and companies.
Facebook disputed this claim, noting in a blog post Sunday that "friends' information, like photos, was only accessible on devices when people made a decision to share their information with those friends".
Archibong said the data was only shared with device makers in order to improve Facebook users' access to the information.
Vladeck said the additional penalties could include a court-ordered monitor of Facebook's business practices, injunctions against particular ways of using of consumers' data or heightened monitoring by the FTC.
Whether Facebook actually violated the FTC consent decree remains to be seen. The deals were struck around the same time the first iPhone was introduced, and when Facebook launched its first mobile website.
Microsoft said its API access ended in 2008, adding that the bridge was used to do things like add contacts and receive notifications, and that all data was stored locally on the user's device.
"Facebook and other data collectors, including these device manufacturers, should be prepared to come before Congress so that we can get a better grasp of the entire data collection ecosystem", New Jersey Rep. The company claims that these private APIs were "tightly controlled" in a statement posted on the Facebook newsroom.
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The opprobrium over Facebook's data privacy practices continues. The company apparently provides user data to device manufacturers; allowing them to access not only the data of those logged into smartphones, but also that of their friends as well.
"These partnerships work very differently from the way in which app developers use our platform", Ime Archibong, a Facebook vice president, told The New York Times.
8/ This wasn't a small misstatement - the crux of Facebook's argument was that they fixed the friend permission problem in 2014. That kind of arrangement was necessary before phone operating systems relied on app stores, it added.
The Times reported some device makers had access to user data such as relationship status, religion, political leaning, and events.
Facebook insists that it has already discontinued 22 of the more than 60 data sharing partnerships.
"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. "You're only bringing your own information and you're able to connect with friends who have also authorized that app directly".
"These partners signed agreements that prevented people's Facebook information from being used for any other objective than to recreate Facebook-like experiences".