Thursday, 13 December, 2018

‘Sure looks like Zuckerberg lied to Congress’: Democrat on Facebook report

Senators press Facebook amid new questions on data-sharing practices Greg Nash
Lori Graves | 06 June, 2018, 00:44

Facebook rejected claims that friends' data was available to device makers without a user's consent. The Congressional hearing was an attempt to clear up confusion surrounding the Cambridge Analytica scandal. There's no evidence that anyone at any of these companies abused their access to Facebook user data.

Facebook began shutting down use of the APIs in April as part of its response to the Cambridge Analytica row.

Who still has access and why?

"As always we're working closely with our partners to provide alternative ways for people to still use Facebook", concluded Facebook's vice president of product partnerships. It also called into question repeated assurances offered by CEO Mark Zuckerberg in testimonies that users have control over their information.

Facebook, which came under attack early this year over British political consultant Cambridge Analytica's harvesting of personal data on 87 million Facebook users and their friends, did not deny the Times story but said it "disagreed" with the issues raised.

But the U.S. company contends those pacts were meant to help device makers create their own versions of Facebook apps, and the data mostly remained on phones that accessed it. The data transfer was based on a connection the phone's software was allowed to make, directly to Facebook's information. Facebook couldn't develop its own mobile apps for these devices because there would have been no way to get them onto the phones. Some device makers could retrieve personal information even from users' friends who believed they had barred any sharing. The potential for additional infractions may only compound Facebook's legal woes. While I can see the need for these alternative APIs given the time frame, why data-sucking partnerships would continue beyond the 2011 consent degree is beyond me.

"Facebook allowed the device companies access to the data of users' friends without their explicit consent, even after declaring that it would no longer share such information with outsiders", the daily said reporting the results of its investigation.

Archibong insists that Facebook controlled its device-connected APIs tightly.

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Ainge added that Kyrie Irving , who is recovering from knee surgery, may be ready for scrimmaging at a point earlier than Hayward. Marcus is a good player", Ainge said during an interview with Boston radio station 98.5 The Sports Hub.

Not mentioned but of particular concern is whether mobile device makers alleged to have ties with a foreign government, such as Huawei or ZTE in China, participated in this program and whether authorities obtained any data gathered via device-connected APIs.

Apple, for instance, said it has worked with Facebook for years to let its users share things on Facebook through iPhone and Mac apps.

"Facebook's secret data sharing partnerships raise urgent new reasons for stronger privacy protections", said Democratic Senator Richard Blumenthal. They're just extensions of Facebook itself, helping the company to serve its two billion users.

Facebook confirmed the agreements but said they were used for creating "Facebook-like experiences" before app stores were the norm.

Archibong said that the companies it partnered with had signed agreements that prevented people's Facebook information from being used for any objective other than to recreate Facebook-like experiences.

Responding to a request for comment, a Facebook spokesperson said, "We look forward to addressing the Commerce Committee's questions".

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