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Pressure mounts on Cambridge Analytica and Facebook over harvested data scandal (Page 2 of 5)

18th March 2018

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Updated 25th March 2018

And continuing with the pouted bottom lip and the “I’ve been a nawty Ivy League college boy”—indeed one that once called those trusting users as “dumb fucks” giving his Fidotbook all those photos, email addresses—and now cell phone numbers—and data to mine (theregister.co.uk, May 2010).

Facebook boss apologises in UK and US newspaper ads (bbc.co.uk).

Facebook boss Mark Zuckerberg has taken out full-page adverts in several UK and US Sunday newspapers to apologise for the firm’s recent data privacy scandal.

He said Facebook could have done more to stop millions of users having their data exploited by political consultancy Cambridge Analytica in 2014.

Indeed, “could have” but didn’t until caught out still treating them as “dumb fucks”.

Facebook full-page newspaper apology

But while apologising for that “breach of trust” back in 2014, what are they still breaching on those mobile ad-friendly devices F’book and Google—who own Android—would much rather rather you view things on:

Facebook has been collecting call history and SMS data from Android devices (theverge.com).

Facebook has been collecting call records and SMS data from Android devices for years. Several Twitter users have reported finding months or years of call history data in their downloadable Facebook data file. A number of Facebook users have been spooked by the recent Cambridge Analytica privacy scandal, prompting them to download all the data that Facebook stores on their account. The results have been alarming for some.

Indeed, the Facebook Zip file containing “info on every single phone cellphone call and text I made for about a year” and “entire call history with my partners mum” in two commentators case. But we did know F’book were using your phone to listen in for what might be targeted ad opportunity (Latest Picks 1st June 2016), didn’t we.

But as Fidiotbook users cock head to consider if it was listening in on them dropping that log while on the social throne updating their status, Hyperman cat meowing “Yeah” to cat food is trending (whatstrending.com) and… what was all the fuss about again?

And perhaps leaving other to wonder:

Facebook data—do we get what we deserve? (bbc.co.uk).

It has often been said that “if you are not paying for it, you are not the customer, you are the product” and it is a maxim that could be applied to a lot of websites. Most are free to use, signing up is easy and their terms and conditions can be agreed to with a single click.

All it takes to get the extras is surrendering personal information.

Updated 26th March 2018

And updating what they were doing with your phone—probably the very phone you gave them to “confirm” your account—in cahoots with that other prolific data miner Google’s Android phones:

Facebook calls log

Facebook scraped call, text message data for years from Android phones [Updated] (arstechnica.com).

In response to an email inquiry by Ars about this data gathering, a Facebook spokesperson replied, “The most important part of apps and services that help you make connections is to make it easy to find the people you want to connect with. So, the first time you sign in on your phone to a messaging or social app, it’s a widely used practice to begin by uploading your phone contacts.”

And seemingly then keeping track of when you called them or they called you.

Facebook uses phone-contact data as part of its friend recommendation algorithm. And in recent versions of the Messenger application for Android and Facebook Lite devices, a more explicit request is made to users for access to call logs and SMS logs on Android and Facebook Lite devices. But even if users didn’t give that permission to Messenger, they may have given it inadvertently for years through Facebook’s mobile apps—because of the way Android has handled permissions for accessing call logs in the past.

While:

The FTC is officially investigating Facebook following the Cambridge Analytica privacy scandal (recode.net).

The Federal Trade Commission confirmed on Monday that it has officially opened an investigation into Facebook following the company’s recent Cambridge Analytica privacy scandal.

And unsurprisingly perhaps in relation to what was going on between F’book and those Android phones:

Congress wants to drag Google and Twitter into Facebook’s privacy crisis (washingtonpost.com).

A panel of Senate lawmakers aims to grill the top executives of Facebook, Google and Twitter next month, the latest indication that the controversy surrounding Facebook’s data privacy practices now threatens to envelope the whole of Silicon Valley.

Seemingly in the same envelope in which they grilled Facebook and Twitter over Russian trolls (Latest Picks 5th October 2017) convincing Americans eager to pull on conspiracy dungarees that crooked Hillary was going to take away their AR-15s and make them wear a pantsuit too.

Updated 28th March 2018

And giving testimony to a British parliamentary committee:

Whistleblower Wylie, org. image: Parliament TV
Whistleblower Wylie, org. image: Parliament TV

Cambridge Analytica whistleblower says his predecessor was allegedly poisoned and police bribed (uk.businessinsider.com).

The whistleblower at the centre of the Cambridge Analytica scandal said he was told his predecessor was murdered in a Kenyan hotel room and that police were bribed not to investigate.

The pink-bonced Canadian whistleblower who started things painting a sordid scene of a company involved in illegal activity around the globe as he addressed a British parliamentary committee on Tuesday.

He said that Aggregate IQ, which he labelled a “shell company” of Cambridge Analytica, had been involved in sending violent and intimidating videos to voters in Nigeria in an attempt to swing an election.

Aggregate IQ being a data analytics company based in Victoria, British Columbia, Canada, outside of British jurisdiction, who recruited Christopher Wylie, who first brought data expertise and microtargeting to Cambridge Analytica: ‘I made Steve Bannon’s psychological warfare tool’: meet the data war whistleblower (theguardian.com).

Wylie meeting [Steven Bannon, Trump’s now ex-statagist, all round “eye of Sauron” and self-described Darth Vader but at the time then executive chairman of the alt-right news network Breitbart] was the moment petrol was poured on a flickering flame. … “[Bannon] got it immediately. He believes in the whole Andrew Breitbart doctrine that politics is downstream from culture, so to change politics you need to change culture. And fashion trends are a useful proxy for that. Trump is like a pair of Uggs, or Crocs, basically. So how do you get from people thinking ‘Ugh. Totally ugly’ to the moment when everyone is wearing them? That was the inflection point he was looking for.”

Indeed, adequately explaining F’books purpose in life. Seemingly he wanted to use his fashion and data manipulating mad skills for Britain’s Lib Dems first, whom his profiling identified as early adopting “absent-minded professors and hippies”, but they just weren’t interested.

Updated 29th March 2018

And joining Cher and Elon Musk in deciding to #DeleteFacebook (usatoday.com)—although when I just peeked Cher was actually still up on F’book (facebook.com) and Musk didn’t even know his SpaceX had one until told and dared to delete:

Playboy joins the #DeleteFacebook movement (fortune.com).

The men’s magazine announced Wednesday that it is deactivating its accounts on the leading social media network. It’s not full-scale account deletion, but it does more or less add Playboy’s voice to those of Elon Musk and WhatsApp co-founder Brian Acton, who say Facebook’s ethical lapses over data protection are too much for them.

But besides no longer shifting airbrushed copy off shelves—even when it dropped and then “surprisingly” brought back the nudes (Latest Picks 14th Feb. 2017)—or persuading any fucker to subscribe online for plastic tittie when porn today is looking for amateur selfies and vids invariably titled on PornHub and xHamster as “leaked from Facebook” (Google):

Playboy already had another reason to be sore at Facebook, though: its policies on sexual content, which has forced self-censorship. As the media company said a statement, the platform’s guidelines have long forced Playboy to “alter [its] voice” in order to avoid having its content taken down.

I’m assuming “alter [its] voice” not meaning Playboy marketing chappie had to put on a deep voice to entice Facebookers to see what’s under his mac.

Updated 30th March 2018

And further enlightening some F’bookers to what they had joined up to while the majority were more interested in how the American Chopper meme is perfect for shouting your nuanced argument (whatstrending.com).

Growth at any cost: Top Facebook executive defended data collection in 2016 memo—and warned that Facebook could get people killed (cnet.com).

Andrew “Boz” Bosworth, a trusted lieutenant to CEO Mark Zuckerberg, defending their desire to “connect more people”—and expose them to ads, snake oil, and fake news—in an internal memo dialectic polemic titled “The Ugly” suggesting senior executives had deep qualms about conduct:

“So we connect more people,” he wrote in another section of the memo. “That can be bad if they make it negative. Maybe it costs someone a life by exposing someone to bullies. Maybe someone dies in a terrorist attack coordinated on our tools.”

Social media “exposing someone to bullies” but “connecting” them none the less.

Met chief says social media is behind soaring rate of knife crime (theguardian.com).

After 13 Londoners were killed in two weeks this month, Met police commissioner Cressida Dick said websites and mobile phone applications such as YouTube, Snapchat and Instagram were partially to blame for the bloodshed.

Speaking to the Times, Dick said trivial disputes could escalate into violence “within minutes“ when rivals set out to goad each other on the internet.

And although not explicitly mentioned, if you think that does not include F’book, as far back of 2008 social media and F’book in particular was fingered for the fuelling, or at least the dodgy apps running on its service it seemingly does little to check:

Facebook accused of fuelling knife crime (campaignlive.co.uk, Jul. 2008).

LONDON—Facebook has come under fire for fuelling the knife crime epidemic among young people through a feature that allows people to virtually stab each other on the social networking site.

A “feature that allows people to virtually stab each other?”

People can “shank” each other (a street slang for stab) by simply clicking on the blade in the “Superpoke!” application, where users can also carry out actions such as spitting, punching and karate chopping.

But it’s not just some Superpoke app that has created the situation, but a metaphorical “shank” is perhaps begging for escalation for those growing up in an era of social one-upmanship and peacocking on social media:

One member said: “While I’m sure the creators of this didn’t think about it to ‘glamorise knife crime’ it is definitely not a good thing and I don’t want to see stuff like this on Facebook. Look before you leap guys.”

However, another said: “I love the word ‘shank’. I use it all the time. I don’t shank people but I used to on Facebook and it’s the best option.”

Next page

Next page: It seems some people do lie about them self on Facebook, and perhaps now we know why; Facebook says more users’ data was harvested, bringing the total to 87m.

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