Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg admitted that his company made mistakes on user data protection and vowed to take steps to prevent the misuse or breach of personal data of users by developers or business partners.
The major data breach that was happened yesterday, our reports revealed that 50 million people manipulate in Donald Trumps 2016 presidential campaign by a UK based political research company called Cambridge Analytica.
33 years old Mark Zuckerberg posted a lengthy Facebook post, broke his silence over the alleged privacy scandal that hit the social media giant.
“I started Facebook, and at the end of the day, I’m responsible for what happens on our platform. I’m serious about doing what it takes to protect our community, Facebook has a “responsibility” to protect its user’s data and if it fails, “we dont deserve to serve you.”
“But we also made mistakes, there’s more to do, and we need to step up and do it,”
Over the past several days, Facebook has been facing an investigation by the Federal Trade Commission and calls for legislative testimonies in the US and Europe.
India’s IT and Law Minister Ravi Shankar Prasad have warned social media companies such as Facebook of stringent actions if there was any attempt to influence the electoral process of any country.
Amidst a global outrage against Facebook, the Silicon Valley-based company, which currently has 2 billion monthly active users, has suffered a loss of USD 50 billion in market value.
To control the damage, Mark announced a slew of measures aimed to “secure our platform further and make our community safer for everyone going forward”.
Three Steps Measure To secure the data:
The Facebook founder said, his company will take three steps to prevent the data misuse.
First, we will investigate all apps that had access to large amounts of information before we changed our platform to dramatically reduce data access in 2014, and we will conduct a full audit of any app with suspicious activity. We will ban any developer from our platform that does not agree to a thorough audit. And if we find developers that misused personally identifiable information, we will ban them and tell everyone affected by those apps. That includes people whose data Kogan misused here as well.
Second, we will restrict developers’ data access even further to prevent other kinds of abuse. For example, we will remove developers’ access to your data if you haven’t used their app in 3 months. We will reduce the data you give an app when you sign in — to only your name, profile photo, and email address. We’ll require developers to not only get approval but also sign a contract in order to ask anyone for access to their posts or other private data. And we’ll have more changes to share in the next few days.
Third, we want to make sure you understand which apps you’ve allowed to access your data. In the next month, we will show everyone a tool at the top of your News Feed with the apps you’ve used and an easy way to revoke those apps’ permissions to your data. We already have a tool to do this in your privacy settings, and now we will put this tool at the top of your News Feed to make sure everyone sees it.
Zuckerberg said that his company had already taken a series of steps in 2014.
How did Cambridge Analytica incident happen?
Giving a timeline of the events, Zuckerberg said in 2013, a Cambridge University researcher named Aleksandr Kogan created a personality quiz app. It was installed by around 300,000 people who shared their data as well as some of their friend’s data.
Given the way Facebook platform worked at the time, this meant Kogan was able to access tens of millions of their friend’s data, he said.
Zuckerberg said in order to prevent the “abusive apps”, a series of measures were taken in 2014 to dramatically limit the data apps could access.
In 2015, Facebook learned from journalists at The Guardian that Kogan had shared data from his app with Cambridge Analytica. It is against Facebook’s policies for developers to share data without peoples consent, he said, adding that he immediately banned Kogan’s app from Facebook, and demanded that Kogan and Cambridge Analytica formally certify that they had deleted all improperly acquired data. They provided these certifications.
Zuckerberg cited some media reports that suggested Cambridge may not have deleted the data as they had certified. This, according to him, was not only a breach of trust between Kogan, Cambridge, and Facebook but also between his company and its users.
“But it was also a breach of trust between Facebook and the people who share their data with us and expect us to protect it. We need to fix that,” he said.
“In this case, we already took the most important steps a few years ago in 2014 to prevent bad actors from accessing peoples information in this way. But there’s more we need to do,” Zuckerberg said.