Facebook revamps privacy tools; Allows you to download user data

30 March, 2018, 00:42 | Author: Lucy Floyd
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The company and its CEO, Mark Zuckerberg, have come under heavy criticism over revelations earlier this month that Cambridge Analytica, a data firm with ties to President Donald Trump's 2016 election campaign, reportedly accessed information from about 50 million Facebook users without their knowledge.

Facebook announced today that it's making major changes to its settings menu and how you'll access your privacy settings.

Ms Egan said Facebook's current privacy settings were spread across 20 different menus and would be consolidated into one screen where users could specify who saw their posts, control the advertisements Facebook showed them, and delete information they had shared with Facebook.

Facebook took out full-page ads in nine major British and U.S. newspapers on Sunday to apologise to users.

Facebook is also rolling out a new Privacy Shortcuts menu in the coming weeks that will let people regulate the amount of personal information the social media giant keeps on them, like political preferences and interests.

However, he has agreed to appear before members of Congress in the United States to answer questions about the recent data scandal.

Over the years, Facebook has been pretty open about the fact it collects people's data.

Scattered snow and rain showers today
Given the clouds and less cold southeasterly breeze, expect a less cold night with lows likely remaining in the low to mid 30s. A cold front will slide through early Wednesday evening bringing a small chance of a few brief light showers or sprinkles.

But in the lawsuit filed on Tuesday in the US District Court in Manhattan, the National Fair Housing Alliance and affiliates in New York, San Antonio and Miami contend that Facebook's advertising platform "continues to enable landlords and real estate brokers to bar families with children, women and others from receiving rental and sales ads for housing". The Facebook data leak has also triggered an investigation by the Federal Trade Commission, which is now looking into the company's privacy practices.

In addition to the redesigned security settings, the company is also adding two more tools to maintain a user's privacy. This is meant to give you easy access to the posts and comments you've made, but you'll also be able to use Access Your Information to download and delete your Facebook data.

Under the general settings page on Facebook, click on the "Download a copy of your Facebook data".

Authorities in Britain have seized data from Cambridge Analytica in their investigation, and European Union officials have warned of consequences for Facebook.

The world's largest social network said in a blog post it had been working on the updates for some time but sped things up to appease users' anger over how the company uses their data and as lawmakers around the globe called for strong regulation.

In conclusion, they said that "in the coming weeks, we'll be proposing updates to Facebook's terms of service that include our commitments to people".

While the move is meant to prepare for tighter European privacy regulations going into effect in May, Facebook said that recent events "underscore their importance".

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