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EU: Facebook Changes Terms of Service to Let Users Know it Sells their Personal Data to Earn Money

The social media giant modified its terms after discussions with the commission and consumer protection authorities

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Zuckerberg has drawn a base salary of $1 for the past three years, and his “other” compensation was listed at $22.6 million, most of which was for his personal security. VOA

The European Commission says Facebook has changed the fine print in its terms of service to clearly explain that it makes money by selling access to users’ data.

The social media giant modified its terms after discussions with the commission and consumer protection authorities.

European Union Consumer Commissioner Vera Jourova said Tuesday, “Now users will clearly understand that their data is used by the social network to sell targeted ads.”

facebook, personal data
FILE – A man poses for a photo in front of a computer showing Facebook ad preferences in San Francisco, California, March 26, 2018. VOA

ALSO READ: US Senators Introduce Bill to Ban Social Media from Tricking Users in Giving up their Personal Data

EU authorities stepped up scrutiny of Facebook’s terms after the Cambridge Analytica data privacy scandal, in which the data on 87 million Facebook users was allegedly improperly harvested.

The changes are part of broader global efforts to rein in social media companies amid concerns about privacy breaches, harmful content and other online abuses. (VOA)

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Facebook, Twitter Reveal That Android Apps Accessed Users Data

Twitter and Facebook said they will notify those whose information was likely shared through apps

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Android Smartphone phone
Smartphones have become the most important gadget to own these days & Android is a mobile operating system. Pixabay

In yet another data breach, Facebook and Twitter have admitted that data of hundreds of users was improperly accessed by some third-party apps on Android Google Play Store as they logged into those apps.

Security researchers discovered that the One Audience and Mobiburn software development kits (SDK) provided access to users’ data, including email addresses, usernames, and recent tweets, on both the platforms.

Twitter and Facebook said they will notify those whose information was likely shared through apps.

“We recently received a report about a malicious mobile software development kit (SDK) maintained by One Audience. We are informing you about this today because we believe we have a responsibility to inform you of incidents that may impact the safety of your personal data or Twitter account,” the micro-blogging platform said in a statement late Monday.

The companies were notified of the vulnerability by third-party security researchers.

Android is a mobile operating system
Android is a mobile operating system based on a modified version of the Linux kernel and other open source software. Pixabay

A Facebook spokesperson told The Verge: “After investigating, we removed the apps from our platform for violating our platform policies and issued cease and desist letters against One Audience and Mobiburn”.

We plan to notify people whose information we believe was likely shared after they had granted these apps permission to access their profile information like name, email and gender”.

At the moment, it looks iOS users were not impacted.

According to Twitter, this issue is not due to a vulnerability in Twitter’s software, but rather the lack of isolation between SDKs within an application.

“We have evidence that this SDK was used to access people’s personal data for at least some Twitter account holders using Android, however, we have no evidence that the iOS version of this malicious SDK targeted people who use Twitter for iOS,” said Twitter.

Twitter has informed Google and Apple about the malicious SDK so they can take further action if needed.

Android apps in a tablet
Some of the best apps available for Android smartphones. Pixabay

“We will be directly notifying people who use Twitter for Android who may have been impacted by this issue,” it added.

Earlier this month, Facebook revealed that at least 100 app developers may have accessed Facebook users’ data for months, confirming that at least 11 partners “accessed group members” information in the last 60 days”.

ALSO READ: Facebook Turned To Privacy Champion By Embracing Encrypted Messaging

The social networking giant found that the apps – primarily social media management and video streaming apps – retained access to group member information, like names and profile pictures in connection with group activity, from the Groups API (application programming interface).

According to the company, the apps designed to make it easier for group admins to manage their groups more effectively and help members share videos to their groups. (IANS)