Obsessed with technology?
Subscribe to the latest tech news as well as exciting promotions from us and our partners!
By subscribing, you indicate that you have read & understood the SPH's Privacy Policy and PDPA Statement.
News Categories

Mark Zuckerberg responds to the Cambridge Analytica scandal

By James Lu - on 22 Mar 2018, 10:38am

Mark Zuckerberg responds to the Cambridge Analytica scandal

After being conspicuously silent for most of the week, Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg has finally posted a lengthy response to the Cambridge Analytica scandal on his personal Facebook page.

Zuckerberg pledged to investigate "all apps that had access to large amounts of information" before Facebook changed its policy in 2014 and more actively control the kind of data access available to developers.

"The good news is that the most important actions to prevent this from happening again today we have already taken years ago," he wrote. "But we also made mistakes, there's more to do, and we need to step up and do it."

Zuckerberg spends the first part of his response explaining what happened: a researcher named Aleksandr Kogan developed a personality quiz app for Facebook. About 300,000 users from the United States installed Kogan’s app and consented to have their personal data harvested. But the app also amassed the personal data of these users’ friends, none of whom consented to do so.

As a result, Kogan and Cambridge Analytica, the political research firm Kogan shared everything with, ended up with the data of tens of millions of people. Upon discovering that transaction, Facebook banned the app and insisted all data be deleted. As it turns out, that might not have been the case, so Facebook recently banned Cambridge Analytica from the platform and hired a forensics firm to audit Cambridge Analytica's systems to make sure the data is really gone.

Zuckerberg then went on to explain his plan for ensuring incidents like this don't happen again. As mentioned, that will involve Facebook investigating apps that had access to broad swathes of user information before shutting down the API that allowed users to pass on data about their friends. Developers that do not agree to an audit will be banned outright.

Going forward, Facebook will also prevent developers from accessing your data if you haven't used their app within three months. Facebook also plans to reduce the amount of personal information developers can access when you sign into an app or service using your Facebook account. According to Zuckerberg, "only your name, profile photo, and email address" will be shared. Currently, app developers can access public profile information like your name, age range, gender, locale and time zone without needing Facebook to review the app in question. Finally, Facebook will make an existing tool that allows users to revoke data access to apps they've given permission to in the past more prominent.

Source: Mark Zuckerberg

Join HWZ's Telegram channel here and catch all the latest tech news!
Our articles may contain affiliate links. If you buy through these links, we may earn a small commission.