Year is almost ending but Facebook scandals will never end. This time New York Times investigated about how Facebook gave access to user data to more than 100 companies, such as Amazon or Netflix. Personal data of billions of users, to the point where they could read or modify their personal messages. The other allegation is that they locate their users even when the location options are deactivated.
The information has been published by the New York Times, which has had access to a total of 270 pages of internal Facebook documents dated in 2017 that reveal how the social network gave priority to a series of large companies that did not have to follow the privacy rules. To verify the information, The Times interviewed 60 people, including former Facebook workers or members of the government for more information.
They learned that Facebook gave permission to more than 100 companies such as Netflix and Spotify to read users’ private messages, or that Amazon could know user names along with contact information. Netflix and Spotify, in contrast, say they were not aware that they had that exceptional right to use the data.
After this claim by the New York Times, Netflix also responded on twitter, saying:
“Netflix never asked for, or accessed, anyone’s private messages. We’re not the type to slide into your DMs.”
To Microsoft, Facebook permitted Bing to have access to all the names of contacts who had users on the network without their consent, while Yahoo had access to the publications. In total, more than 150 companies have had superior access, including online stores, car manufacturers, entertainment and media website.
Facebook has claimed that these agreements are not active, but the New York Times says yes. In a statement, The social networking site said that they didn’t give access to the companies to private messages without users consent.
“To be clear: none of these partnerships or features gave companies access to information without people’s permission, nor did they violate our 2012 settlement with the FTC.”
The post continued to clarify that “our integration partners had to get authorization from people. You would have had to sign in with your Facebook account to use the integration offered by Apple, Amazon or another integration partner”.
Now the problem is that Facebook never explained in a simple way how far these companies could reach your personal data. Most users think that by synchronizing their account they can access faster or see what their contacts share, but not to the point of reading private messages and your friend list as well as location can be used in other products.