image source: economictimes.indiatimes.com
Amidst all the accusations of the massive data breach scandal, Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg finally breaks his silence and admits that Facebook has made a mistake. He has also ensured that all the necessary preventive steps will be taken to protect the user’s personal data from being misused by any organization or individual, especially by developers and business partners.
Mark Zuckerberg, 33, through a long Facebook post on Wednesday, broke his silence and said “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,”
From where all this started?
Reports alleged that Cambridge Analytica, a UK based data firm, accessed data from about 50 million Facebook users without their knowledge, which was misused in the US Presidential Elections back in 2016. It is also being said that it was done in ties with Donald Trump election campaign. According to the reports, the data analysis firm tried to influence the Americans voting decision using the data obtained from the million user’s Facebook profile.
To this allegation Facebook said that initially data was taken by Aleksandr Kogan, professor of Cambridge University of Pschyology, in 2003 for academic purpose which was in line with the policy. But, later in 2015, he transferred the information to the outside sources, like Cambridge Analytica, which is against Facebook policy.
Later in the reports, Cambridge said that it has deleted all the data and as a proof of their statement, they have shown the required certifications to the Facebook officials. Now, looking to the heat of the moment, the social media giant has currently hired a digital forensics firm to further investigate the matter.
Facebook has definitely landed itself in a huge trouble as it is now facing lawsuits from all its investors and users as well. In the midst of all this #deletefacebook was and is still trending on Twitter. The Co-founder of WhatsApp, Brian Acton, also joined the movement through one of his latest tweets that read “It is time. #deletefacebook” In 2014, Facebook bought WhatsApp for $19billion after which Brian Acton, left the company to start his new venture.
With Facebook already facing the consequences of its major data leak scandal, Indian IT and Law minister, Ravi Shankar Prasad’s statement has further intensified the matter. In his recent interaction with reporters in New Delhi he said “If Facebook is found to be involved in data breach of Indians, we will take very strict action against them including the summoning of Mark Zuckerberg to India.” He strictly warns the Facebook that it should not be involved in influencing the electoral process in our country.
As per the statistics, Facebook has lost over 24% of the total amount of its users. It has suffered a loss of nearly USD 50 billion in market value in just a week.
In a damage control mode, Mark Zuckerberg said that his company will take three major steps to prevent the misuse of data.
Those three steps include:
1. All the apps that have access to large amount of data before Facebook changed its platform to reduce the data access back in 2014 will be investigated. Also any other suspicious app will be thoroughly scrutinized.
2. The developer’s data access will be reduced and if it denies agreeing to it, the developer will be banned from the platform. That means the data which user provides to any app they sign in will be restricted to only name, profile photo and email address.
3. Facebook will show its users a tool at the top of their News Feed with the apps they have used and an easy way to revoke those apps’ permissions to their data. Though this tool is already available in the settings but can now be accessed more easily.
Facebook founder post read “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 people’s information in this way. But there’s more we need to do.”
Well, all we say is that never put up all your information on social media. Use it but carefully and responsibly.