About 87 million Facebook users’ details were exposed in the recent Cambridge Analytica scandal according to Facebook chief technology officer Mike Schroepfer.
The scandal exposed that the platform allowed app developers to gather a wide range of personal data beyond monitoring online activity to archive with users’ SMS and call information. In the case of Cambridge Analytica, information was also gathered from app users’ friends.
The subsequent public uproar resulted in a decrease of $40 billion in Facebook's stock value a week after the discovery. It also has led many users to re-think whether Facebook is trustworthy with their personal information.
Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg, who published an apology in various newspapers, has agreed to testify before a Senate Judiciary Committee on April 10 2018.
In a blog post on changes to improve security, Schroepfer said the American social network would restrict access to information on various apps. Facebook also announced changes to Facebook Login with a tightened review process.
Other security measures include disabling the ability to search using another person’s phone number or email address.
From April 9 2018, Facebook will display a link on the News Feed which will show users which apps they use and the information currently being shared.
“As part of this process we will also tell people if their information may have been improperly shared with Cambridge Analytica" said Schroepfer.
“In total, we believe the Facebook information of up to 87 million people — mostly in the US — may have been improperly shared with Cambridge Analytica,” he added.
Facebook ceo Mark Zuckerberg apologised to users through various newspaper adverts.
Thomas Maydon, a Data Analytics Expert from Principa has a different perspective on this matter and holds Facebook users partly responsible.
“As with each data breach, the Cambridge Analytica and Facebook story has raised some interesting points. Data is not intrinsically evil – like money or our ability to use language – data can be used positively or negatively.”
He advised all businesses to choose carefully with whom they associate. He said Facebook users are no exception.
So, do you know what personal information Facebook has gathered on you? Here is how you can find out:
Go to “facebook.com/settings”
On the bottom left, press “Download a copy of your Facebook data”
Press “Start My Archive” when you see something like the image below
Enter your password when you see a box that says: “For your security, you must re-enter your password to continue.”
Press “Start my Archive” when something like the image below appears
Facebook will then communicate that they are collecting information/data and that they will send you an email when it is ready.