Facebook is still the center of criticism for the lack of care with which it uses and shares the data of its users, and now a new chapter is added.
A commission of the Parliament of Great Britain disclosed internal documents of the giant of the social networks that show that the firm created by Mark Zuckerberg has used its huge bank of personal data as a competitive weapon, often in ways designed not to inform its users
Parliament’s media commission accused Facebook of making special deals with some application developers to give them more access to information, while leaving out others that they considered potential rivals, as happened with Twitter and Vine.
According to the AP, in other documents, the executives of the company discussed how they kept the collection and exploitation of their users’ data hidden.
The biggest problem is that Facebook collected call records and text messages from phones with the Android operating system of its users, without asking for their authorization.
The British commission disclosed more than 200 pages of documents about Facebook’s internal discussions about the value of users’ personal information. Although the majority covers a period between 2012 to 2015, the first three years after Facebook began trading, they offer an unusual glimpse of the company’s internal operations and give a dimension of how it used its users’ personal information to Earn money while publicly pledging to protect your privacy.
The documents were confiscated from application developer Six4Three, creator of a swimsuit image search platform that no longer works. Six4Three acquired the files as part of a lawsuit in the United States accusing Facebook of anticompetitive and deceptive business practices. The documents remain under the seal of the court in the United States.
“You are, and always have been, the most valuable product of Facebook”
In a summary of the key issues in the documents, the commission said Facebook “put on approval list”, or made exceptions for companies like Airbnb and Netflix, which gave them continuous access to users’ “friends” even after that the social network announced changes in 2015 to end this practice.
Why you can not trust Facebook
Some critics of the social network said about new revelations that reinforced their concerns about whether users really know how Facebook handles their personal data.
“This kind of action is the reason why companies should be required to disclose exactly how they collect and share our information, with harsh penalties for those who lie about it,” US Sen. Ron Wyden said in a statement.
Facebook said the documents were misleading and said the information they contain is “just part of the story.”