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Facebook Gave Device Makers Deep Access To Data on Users and Friends

Facebook allowed phone makers to access users' data: Report

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Facebook Confirms Data-sharing Agreements with Chinese Firms
Facebook Confirms Data-sharing Agreements with Chinese Firms. Pixabay
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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.

Even before Facebook apps were widely available on smartphones, Facebook had data-sharing partnerships with the device makers, the report said citing company officials, adding that most of the deals remain in effect.

While the device partnerships allowed Facebook to expand its reach, it let the phone makers offer customers popular features of the social network, such as messaging, “like” buttons and address books.

The deals raise concerns about the company’s privacy protections and compliance with a 2011 consent decree with the US Federal Trade Commission (FTC), The Times said.

Facebook, which is already under scrutiny for misuse of millions of its users’ data after the Cambridge Analytica data leak scandal became public, reportedly allowed the device companies access to the data of users’ friends without their explicit consent.

Representational image.
Representational image. Pixabay

While Facebook’s leaders said that the kind of access exploited by the political consulting firm in 2014 was cut off by the next year as it prohibited developers from collecting information from users’ friends.

But the company officials did not disclose that such restrictions were not applicable to makers of cellphones, tablets and other hardware, the report said.

However, Facebook officials denied the device partnerships violated its privacy policies, the FTC agreement and pledges to users.

Also Read: Hillary Clinton Wishes to Head the Facebook

They said its partnerships were governed by contracts that strictly limited use of the data, including any stored on partners’ servers, adding that they knew of no cases where the information had been misused.

“These partnerships work very differently from the way in which app developers use our platform,” Ime Archibong, a Facebook vice president was quoted as saying. (IANS)

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Facebook Helps Couple Raise $3.4mn For Reuniting Immigrant Families

Over 83,000 people have contributed to the cause on Facebook so far

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Facebook Helps Couple Raise $3.4mn For Reuniting Immigrant Families
Facebook Helps Couple Raise $3.4mn For Reuniting Immigrant Families. Pixabay

A couple in the US has seen outpouring of support from thousands of people when they set out to raise money on Facebook for reuniting immigrant parents with their children, helping them raise $3.4 million in a matter of three days, the media reported.

Charlotte and Dave Willner, set a target of raising $3.75 million, the USA Today reported on Monday.

The money raised from the Facebook campaign, “Reunite an immigrant parent with their child,” is channelled to RAICES, a Texas-based nonprofit that provides free legal services to immigrants and refugees.

Over 83,000 people have contributed to the cause on Facebook so far.

“The funding we are receiving will save lives. It will keep people from being deported to unsafe countries,” Jenny Hixon of RAICES was quoted as saying.

Facebook mobile app
Facebook mobile app, Pixabay

“It speaks to the outrage the cruel policies at the border have provoked. It honestly gives us hope in what has felt like a very dark time,” she added.

The US administration policy that separates immigrant parents from their children at the Mexico border has drawn criticism from different quarters, including the US First Lady Melania Trump.

According to the the Department of Homeland Security, nearly 2,000 children were separated from their families after illegally crossing the US border in April and May.

Also Read: Facebook To Block Defensive Ads Targeting Under Adults

Launched in 2017, Facebook’s fundraiser platform allows people to raise money for different causes, including personal causes.

Personal fundraisers allow people to raise money for a friend, themselves or a sick pet directly on Facebook.

The social media giant waived fees last year for nonprofit fundraisers. (IANS)

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