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Mark Zuckerberg Claims Facebook Does Not Sell Users’ Data

Facebook had said it never gave large tech companies access to people's data without their permission as its integration partners "had to get authorisation from people"

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As Facebook turns 15 next month, its Founder and CEO Mark Zuckerberg has once again defended the social media giant, saying the company is not selling its users’ data to anyone.

“We don’t sell people’s data, even though it’s often reported that we do,” he wrote in an opinion piece in the Wall Street Journal on Thursday.

“Clickbait and other junk may drive engagement in the near term, but it would be foolish for us to show this intentionally,because it’s not what people want,” he added.

The 1,000-word defence came after Facebook faced intense scrutiny over how it handled data of over two billion users amid several data scandals in recent years.

Facebook, data, vietnam
This photo shows a Facebook app icon on a smartphone in New York. VOA

“Based on what pages people like, what they click on, and other signals, we create categories and then charge advertisers to show ads in that category,” he said.

“You have control over what information we use to show you ads, and you can block any advertiser from reaching you,” the Facebook CEO added.

In December, the social media giant said it never allowed its partners to access users’ private messages without their permission, after a New York Times report claimed that Facebook allowed large technology companies and popular apps like Netflix or Spotify to access its users’ personal information.

Zuckerberg said people “consistently tell us they don’t want to see this content”.

In a bid to prevent foreign interference into elections, facebook has also begun labelling all political and issue ads in the us -- including a "paid for by" disclosure from the advertiser at the top of the advertisement.
Facebook CEO of Mark Zuckerberg. Wikimedia commons

“Advertisers don’t want their brands anywhere near it. The only reason bad content remains is because the people and artificial-intelligence systems we use to review it are not perfect — and not because we have an incentive to ignore it. Our systems are still evolving and improving,” he added.

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On collecting personal data, the CEO said: “There’s no question that we collect some information for ads but that information is generally important for security and operating our services as well.”

Facebook had said it never gave large tech companies access to people’s data without their permission as its integration partners “had to get authorisation from people”. (IANS)

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Facebook Loses its Place Among the World’s 10 Most Valuable Brands

Only 28 per cent of Facebook users believed the company is committed to privacy, down from a high of 79 per cent

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Corporate, America, Climate Change
FILE - In this April 30, 2019, file photo, Facebook stickers are laid out on a table at F8, Facebook's developer conference in San Jose, Calif. The Boston-based renewable energy developer Longroad Energy announced in May that Facebook is building a… VOA

Hit by privacy scandals and year-round investigations, Facebook has lost its place among the world’s 10 most valuable brands in global brand consultancy Interbrand’s annual ranking of best top 100 brands.

Facebook fell to the 14th spot. Two years back, the social networking giant was at the eighth spot in the list, billed as a “rapidly appreciating” brand.

Apple led the top 100 best brands’ list, followed by Google and Amazon. Microsoft was the fourth, Coca Cola fifth and Samsung came sixth on the list.

The seventh spot was grabbed by Toyota, Mercedes was the eighth, McDonald’s ninth and Disney was at the 10th spot.

Pitching for breaking up Facebook, US-based software giant Salesforce CEO Marc Benioff has called the social networking platform “new cigarettes” which are making kids addictive. Benioff said that the company must be held accountable now.

Several US lawmakers like Senators Kamala Harris and Elizabeth Warren have also been pitching to break up Facebook.

Fake, News, WhatsApp, Facebook, India
The Facebook mobile app on an Android smartphone. Wikimedia Commons

Nearly 40 state attorneys general in the US have decided to join probe against Facebook’s anti-competitive business practices.

Facebook this year agreed to pay $5 billion as a settlement to the US Federal Trade Commission (FTC) over privacy violations.

According to a survey by independent research firm Ponemon Institute in 2018, users’ confidence in Facebook plunged by 66 per cent after Cambridge Analytica data scandal involving 87 million users.

Also Read: Apple Users can Now Report Accidents, Traffic on Google Maps

Only 28 per cent of Facebook users believed the company is committed to privacy, down from a high of 79 per cent.

“We found that people care deeply about their privacy and when there is a mega data breach, as in the case of Facebook, people will express their concern. And some people will actually vote with their feet and leave,” Ponemon said in a statement. (IANS)