Saturday, 22 September, 2018

Facebook Shares Perk Up After Social Network Tweaks Privacy Settings

Facebook chief executive Mark Zuckerberg Facebook chief executive Mark Zuckerberg
Edmund Robinson | 30 March, 2018, 00:42

For the unversed, Cambridge Analytica, the political data firm with ties to United States President Donald Trump's 2016 election campaign, is under fire for allegedly gaining access to private information of more than 50 million Facebook users, and influencing elections by using this stolen data. After surging to a 52-week high of $195 in January, shares have retreated to levels where they traded last July.

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

The firm has redesigned its privacy settings on mobile to move all the settings into one page. They are still down nearly 17 per cent since March 16, when Facebook first acknowledged that user data had been improperly channelled via a third-party app to political consultancy Cambridge Analytica, which was hired by Donald Trump's 2016 presidential campaign.

Last week, a U.K. parliamentary media committee summoned CEO Mark Zuckerberg to testify about how Facebook uses data, while U.K. Information Commissioner Elizabeth Denham is investigating how Cambridge Analytica got the data.

"We've heard loud and clear that privacy settings and other important tools are too hard to find", chief privacy officer Erin Egan and deputy general counsel Ashlie Beringer said in a blog post. Additional security options, including "two-factor authentication", have also been implemented.

Digital law experts say Indian regulations offered particularly weak safeguards against data breach.

The worry is that users will leave the platform, which will in turn, make advertisers do the same.




According to Egan, they are making the settings regarding the data uploading, access to main system and browsing, sharing information and using Messenger app on Facebook and Facebook Lite will be made more accessible and easy to find for users.

The Privacy Shortcuts menu is also getting a simplified makeover to make the experience more visual and easier to navigate.

If you're anxious about what personal information Facebook has gathered on you, there's a way to find it and delete it. There you can make your account more secure, review your personal information and control who sees your posts and profile information, they said. Only when their stock has been plummeting in this user-confidence crisis have they chose to expedite the kind of tools that the FTC consent decree should have prompted three election cycles ago.

The release of the new tools comes as Facebook grapples with questions about user privacy and how it handles your personal data.

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".

Facebook also said it will propose updates to its terms of service in the coming weeks and update its privacy policy, but gave no further details.

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