Facebook sending users privacy notification after data breach


The crisis stems from revelations that Cambridge Analytica, a data-mining firm connected to President Donald Trump's successful 2016 campaign, had exploited weaknesses in Facebook's privacy controls to collect personal information about 87 million people without their consent.

The app vacuumed up not just the data of the people who took it, but also - thanks to Facebook's loose restrictions - data from their friends, too, including details that they had not meant to share publicly.

"I just met one-on-one with Zuckerberg and in no uncertain terms reminded him that Facebook has a responsibility to its users to protect our personal data".

Top of the agenda in the forthcoming hearings will be Facebook's admission that the personal information of up to 87 million users, mostly in the United States, may have been improperly shared with political consultancy Cambridge Analytica. On Tuesday, he will appear before a joint hearing of two Senate committees, while on Wednesday the 33-year-old exec will be grilled by a House committee.

Zuckerberg faced growing calls to appear before the USA government in the wake of the Cambridge Analytica data misuse scandal, in which the personal information of an estimated 87 million users was allegedly exploited for targeted political profiling by a UK-based company claiming to have the power to influence elections. "That goes for fake news, foreign interference in elections, and hate speech, as well as developers and data privacy".

"But it's clear now that we didn't do enough to prevent these tools from being used for harm as well".

In the statement, Zuckerberg addresses Russian election interference and acknowledges, as he has in the past, that the company was too slow to respond and that it's "working hard to get better".

Zuckerberg, who co-founded Facebook in 2004, once again admitted the lapses and asked for another chance to lead the company.

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There have been more than a dozen company blog posts about data privacy and election meddling in the three weeks since news of the Cambridge Analytica scandal first broke.

That Facebook app, called "This is Your Digital Life", was a personality quiz created in 2014 by an academic researcher named Aleksander Kogan, who paid about 270,000 people to take it. "It was my mistake, and I'm sorry", Zuckerberg said in his written testimony released by the House commerce committee. It also suspended the Canadian firm AggregateIQ over apparent collaboration with Cambridge Analytica.

When is Mark Zuckerberg testifying before Congress?

Facebook Inc Chief Executive Mark Zuckerberg swapped his trademark T-shirt and jeans for a dark suit and a purple tie on Monday as he met USA lawmakers to apologize for the social network's misuse of its members' data and to head off possible regulation.

In recent months Facebook has announced several measures aimed at improving people's privacy and transparency around political advertising. Associated Press reporters around the world have been surveying users, none of whom have reported seeing anything from Facebook.

Facebook chief Mark Zuckerberg placed the blame for privacy and security lapses at the world's largest social network squarely on himself as he girded for appearances this week on Capitol Hill before angry lawmakers.

Technology industry officials said they also expected Zuckerberg's testimony to be long on political point scoring and short on legislative ideas.

"And Facebook keeps saying its an idealistic company".