When it comes to tracking users and their day to day browsing information, the tech giant Facebook is always one step ahead. During the past few months, the company had been making quite the rounds in the news for violating privacy policies of its users by giving out personal information and user data to other corporate and companies for business benefits. Thus, in short it won’t be wrong to assume that if you are a Facebook user or have the app installed into your android devices, the chances of your personal data being exploited and handed from one corporation to the other is quite obvious.
Now you might think that as long as you are not logged into Facebook or its app, you are safe. Well if you think that is all Facebook is capable of, then there is a big surprise for you in store.
In a recent study by Privacy International, they have found that even other phone apps which you download and install into your devices, send such vital user data and information to Facebook. Privacy International is a registered charity in London which works for the safeguard of digital data of people and their rights. Basically, it works as the middle man between the threats which modern technologies pose and the rights of individuals who are unaware of such threats. The charity organisation works towards exposing such exploitation of user data by tech giants like Facebook and others which deal with user information for their own gain.
The study says that out of the 34 Android apps that they have tested, 24 of them are apps which have been found to send user data and other browsing information to Facebook. The report says that this information is shared through the very Software Development Kit (SDK) provided by Facebook to app developers who come up with such android apps. So, in the end of the day, whether you are registered to Facebook or have the Facebook app installed into your device, it does not matter. Your information to Facebook is a vital source of earning and they will probably get it some way or the other.
The types of information such apps share with the tech giant may range from information about your android device to the language and time zone you are in, your browsing information, your location, almost any such thing which they can cash out is vital for them.
To explain the whole concept better. Let me lay out to you a simple example. Have you ever wandered why soon after you have looked for something in an e-commerce app or website, you are bombarded with Facebook ads of the same very topic or product? This is just a simple example. There are many other apps out there. Be it come kind of productivity app or a simple entertainment. Your personal data is not as safe as it looks. So, the next time you try out such apps. Do keep in mind that there is a big brother watching your moves.
Below, I have listed a very few of those examples of abuse which the most popular social media platform is a part of.
- Myanmar Military’s use of Facebook to show propaganda and fear
- Official Naramendra Modi app that collects data for political reuse
- Facebook study of “Emotional contagion” turns users into subjects
The above is just a few of the examples of what these apps are capable of doing with the information you provide, or to be precise the information you don’t even know they take from you.