Facebook Admits It Collects User Data Even From Non-Users


Facebook has released more information on the social media platform's tracking of users off-site, after its CEO, Mark Zuckerberg, failed to answer questions about the process from United States politicians and as the company prepares to fight a lawsuit over facial recognition in California.

Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg testifies before a House Energy and Commerce Committee hearing regarding the company's use and protection of user data on Capitol Hill in Washington, US, April 11, 2018.

Amid the raging Facebook-Cambridge Analytica controversy, Product Management Director of the company, David Baser tried to answer some "hard questions" and clarified about the data it collects and how it employs to its own benefit or in order to provide "better" services.

Privacy campaigner Paul-Olivier Dehaye disagreed, noting that, as a non-Facebook user, he had been unable to access personal data collected through the company's off-site tracking systems.

Facebook says other companies like Google, Amazon, Twitter and Pinterest also do the same.

"This kind of data collection is fundamental to how the internet works", Facebook said in a statement to Reuters.

Zuckerberg said on Wednesday under questioning by US Representative Ben Luján that, for security reasons, Facebook also collects "data of people who have not signed up for Facebook".

An Ad Preferences setting shows you advertisers whose ads you might be seeing, and you can remove those advertisers, or opt out of those types of ads entirely (and opt out of using Facebook interests to show you ads on other websites apps).

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"We want to protect out users' data from malicious abuse of trust", the company wrote in a blog post. Finally, Facebook ads and measurement tools facilitate websites and apps with advertisements.

"Cookies and device identifiers help us determine whether the person uses Facebook".

"It also gets cookies, which are identifiers that websites use to know if you've visited before". These and many other companies offer advertising services too.

The website also gets information about the browser and the operating system (Android or Windows for example) you are using. Now it restricts apps from accessing users' personal data if the app has not been used by them for more than three months.

Facebook also revised the social login rules for third party apps, last week. Collecting data about users from other sites.

Pegimane's social media app and the website are created to connect real friends for life. According to him, "If someone tries to log into your account using an IP address from a different country, we might ask some questions to verify if it's you". Tough luck if you don't want "engaging" ads.

A survey of 3,000 people by U.S. think-tank the Ponemon Institute, reported by The Financial Times, showed that users are significantly more sceptical that Facebook will handle their personal information with care than they were a year ago.