Kennedy: Unanswered questions in Facebook privacy issue

Lorie Shaull

Lorie Shaull

As I understand it, it's a tactic called "pervasive ad targeting", wherein if you happen to check out the price of a desk or a gallon of milk, the internet registers your interest and gloms onto you like a death-eater.

"You said that everyone controls their data, but you're collecting data on people who are not even Facebook users, that have never signed a consent, a privacy agreement."-U.S".

Facebook elevated her profile in the business world as she opened up about her own life in two deeply personal books, Lean In, a best seller championing women in the workplace, and Option B, a meditation on love, loss and resilience after the sudden death of her husband, Dave Goldberg, in 2015.

Mark Zuckerberg's second-in-command runs Facebook's operations and oversees its advertising business, placing her in a almost unrivaled role of responsibility when as many as 87 million Facebook users had their data siphoned by Cambridge Analytica, a British firm with ties to Donald Trump's 2016 presidential campaign. They have to have some knowledge of how other companies in their chain, be it data suppliers or customers, are using that data.

"Just like the bug bounty program, we will reward based on the impact of each report", said Greene.

According to the law, organisations will be held accountable for the personal data they collect from people.

More: After Facebook hearings, users want to know: who is protecting my data?

"Facebook's founder and CEO Mark Zuckerberg confronted two days of flame broiling before U.S. government officials this week, following worries over how his organization manages individuals" information.

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"For a long time, Facebook was not in the crosshairs of Washington", Useem said. None of the good changes the company announced in recent weeks will truly hurt Facebook because it hasn't revised its economic engine: all that data, and unfettered use of it without informed approval of Facebook's citizens.

For example, when it comes to facial recognition, Facebook is fighting against users consenting to have their faces recognized in photos. "Facebook makes a lot of advertising money off this", Wozniak said. "In that sense, Google is not much better". The data obtained by Kogan was then sold to Cambridge Analytic.

What has made the public care more about the issue are headlines related to the last election, said experts. So it was a theoretical "yes" by Zuckerberg for more internal regulation; and another "yes" for more investment in artificial intelligence (AI) to detect security breaches and fake news.

But I digressed ... mostly because I shuddered at the thought of what story the Brothers Grimm would have written featuring a stepmother-in-law.

More: Where was Facebook's Sheryl Sandberg during Cambridge Analytica data leak?

For those 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. That system of digital breadcrumbs is often why a product someone searched for on one website can end up following them around the internet in adverts.

As the prospect of regulation looms, Facebook is fortunate to have a leader who knows the Capitol corridors so well, said Michael Useem, professor at the Wharton School at the University of Pennsylvania. About 70% of USA internet-users surveyed in January by market-research firm Kantar Millward Brown said they thought online adverts were more intrusive now than they were three years ago.

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