Facebook Shared Data With Device Makers: New York Times

According to a report from The New York Times, Facebook formed data-sharing partnerships with Apple, Samsung, and dozens of other device makers, allowing them to access vast amounts of its users’ personal information (If you hit a paywall, here is an alternative source):

Facebook has reached data-sharing partnerships with at least 60 device makers — including Apple, Amazon, BlackBerry, Microsoft and Samsung — over the last decade, starting before Facebook apps were widely available on smartphones, company officials said. The deals allowed Facebook to expand its reach and let device makers offer customers popular features of the social network, such as messaging, “like” buttons and address books.

But the partnerships, whose scope has not previously been reported, raise concerns about the company’s privacy protections and compliance with a 2011 consent decree with the Federal Trade Commission. 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. Some device makers could retrieve personal information even from users’ friends who believed they had barred any sharing, The New York Times found. Most of the partnerships remain in effect, though Facebook began winding them down in April.

Facebook who is now very sensitive to this sort of thing has hit back via this blog post where they confirmed some parts of the Times’ report but disputed others. In short, they put some spin on this. But given what’s gone on over the last little while, I am not sure if that will be enough to calm the waters.



2 Responses to “Facebook Shared Data With Device Makers: New York Times”

  1. […] I posted a story on Facebook sharing user data with a bunch of device makers. Something they only partially admit to […]

  2. […] is on top of data sharing agreements that the New York Times found out about earlier this week. But in any case, this seems troubling to me and I hope people in power ask questions about […]

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