Facebook has recently been embroiled in what can be accurately described as a scandal. The scandal being that data harvested through Facebook was then used for political ends. After staying silent for a few days, Mark Zuckerberg has now addressed the issue.
What Happened With Cambridge Analytica?
In 2013, a man named Aleksandr Kogan created a personality quiz for Facebook. According to The Guardian, 300,000 people installed the app, enabling Kogan to access the data of millions of people. It’s alleged that Kogan then shared that data with Cambridge Analytica.
Cambridge Analytica is a company which specializes in data mining and data analysis. And this data can be used to help political parties during elections. And it’s alleged the data harvested from Facebook was used to target voters in the 2016 U.S. presidential election.
How Is Facebook Planning on Fixing This?
It took Facebook several days to respond to the Cambridge Analytica scandal, but Mark Zuckerberg has now addressed the issues in a post on Facebook. In it, he details the timeline of events and reveals what steps Facebook will take to prevent this happening again in the future.
Zuckerberg starts out by admitting that Facebook has “a responsibility to protect your data, and if we can’t then we don’t deserve to serve you.” He then suggests that “the most important actions to prevent this from happening again today we have already taken years ago.”
I want to share an update on the Cambridge Analytica situation — including the steps we've already taken and our next…
These previous actions were to “dramatically limit the data apps could access, “preventing them asking for “data about a person’s friends unless their friends had also authorized the app,” and requiring “developers to get approval from us before they could request any sensitive data from people”.
Facebook is taking three further steps to prevent a repeat performance. These are conducting a “full audit of any app with suspicious activity,” restricting “developers’ data access even further to prevent other kinds of abuse,” and helping users “understand which apps you’ve allowed to access your data”.
Is It Really Time to Ditch Facebook?
— Jason (@jasonelevation) March 21, 2018
The Cambridge Analytica scandal has understandably upset a lot of Facebook users. Especially those who may have been influenced to vote a certain way and can trace that back to Facebook. And many are calling on disgruntled users to #DeleteFacebook.
Deleting your Facebook account is certainly an option, as we suggested with our reasons to stop using Facebook in 2018. However, you CAN limit the data you share with third parties, and if Zuckerberg is to be believed maybe Facebook has learned its lesson.
Image Credit: Lord Jim/Flickr