Monday June 25, 2018
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Will enquire into Facebook demanding users’ Aadhaar details: Minister

The Minister said that he will inquire about the claims and very soon the government will bring data protection law.

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Facebook has over 217 million monthly active users in India and 212 million of them are active on smartphones. Pixabay
Facebook has over 217 million monthly active users in India and 212 million of them are active on smartphones. Pixabay
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Electronics and Information Technology Minister Ravi Shankar Prasad on Friday said he will “get the entire facts” about social networking site Facebook reportedly demanding new users’ Aadhaar and revert to Parliament.
“I have also seen the news (about Facebook) in media. They have also given a reply that it was not mandatory. But I will get the entire facts on record before I revert to you,” Prasad told the Rajya Sabha in response to a supplementary question on cybersecurity and data protection.
The Minister also said that the government is going to bring very soon a data protection law.
It was reported a few days back that new users trying to sign up for Facebook were asked to enter their name “as per Aadhaar” records.
However, Facebook has already clarified that it was “not collecting” the Aadhaar data and was just running a “small test” to weed out fake accounts.
“There have been a number of reports about a small test we ran in India to help new users sign up for Facebook. Some have interpreted this test as a request for people’s Aadhaar information when you sign up for a Facebook account. This is not correct,” Facebook said in a blog post on Wednesday.
The government will be soon be introducing Data Protection law. Source: Aadhar Card Kendra
The government will be soon be introducing Data Protection law. Source: Aadhar Card Kendra
 “The test, which has now finished, merely includes additional language on the account sign-up page to explain that using their Aadhaar name will help family and friends recognise them.
“We are not collecting Aadhaar data and do not require people to enter their Aadhaar name when they sign up to Facebook,” it added.
Earlier, Prasad said that the government has no plans to make internet availability a fundamental right but the government is “committed to providing internet connectivity to its citizens”.
“As per a report from TRAI, as on June 2017, India has over 431.21 million internet users and with several million new internet users joining every month.
“This has resulted in more and more Indians coming online and using the internet, giving them the freedom to experience and use the internet in every aspect of their lives,” Prasad said in the reply.
“Our ‘Digital India’ programme envisions transforming India into a digitally empowered society and knowledge economy.
“The pillars of Digital India programme namely Broadband Highways, Universal Access to Mobile Connectivity and Public Internet Access Programme address the issue of Internet availability in the country,” he added. IANS
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Facebook Hires A Team To Find Troubles Before They Arise

The group is called "Investigative Operations Team"

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Facebook Hires A Team To Find Troubles Before They Arise
Facebook Hires A Team To Find Troubles Before They Arise. Flickr

Facebook has hired a team of ex-intelligence officers, researchers and media buyers to find the worst possible things that can be done using the platform and to help the company prevent them.

The group is called “Investigative Operations Team” and is testing the company’s advertising systems, pages, Instagram, Messenger and more, BuzzFeed News reported on Saturday.

The team is searching for troubling behaviour, examining keywords and other signals that could be used to promote violence. It is also investigating Facebook’s merchant tools, attempting to spot problematic product sales.

“What we have now is a series of people who are truly looking for how could you possibly do something wrong,” said Lynda Talgo, the Facebook Business Integrity Director.

facebook
facebook, Pixabay

“Their entire job is to look forward and figure out what’s coming around the corner,” she added.

Facebook’s creation of this team is the latest sign of an ongoing mindset shift among Silicon Valley’s giants who are realising they can’t simply assume the best of their users and must prepare for the worst behaviour imaginable.

Also read: Your Time On Facebook’ May Soon be Monitored

Google has set up an “Intelligence Desk” at YouTube which is meant to detect controversial content before it mushrooms into crisis. (IANS)