Facebook comes under attack for tracking internet users who don't have a Facebook account

Posted: , by Alan Friedman Alan Friedman

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So you think that you're pretty smart because you never signed up for a Facebook account. And while your friends are concerned about who got to use their profile data without permission, you gloat that your personal information is safe and remains out of the clutches of Facebook. Or is it? During his testimony in front of a House committee on Wednesday, Facebook co-founder and CEO Mark Zuckerberg stated that his company does track internet users who have not subscribed to Facebook.

Responding to a question poised by U.S. Representative Ben Luján (D-New Mexico), Zuckerberg responded that Facebook tracks non-users for security reasons. That means that these non-subscribers haven't a clue about what information Facebook has obtained about them. This didn't sit well with the lawmakers in Congress, who might draft regulations to be applied against the social media app and others of its ilk. "We've got to fix that," said Rep. Luján, referring to a process that forces non Facebook users to sign up for the service if they want to know what personal information the company has obtained. Facebook has responded by saying that it has no plans to develop a method to allow non-users to see the data about them collected by the company.

Besides politicians, privacy advocates are also disturbed by Zuckerberg's comments. Chris Calabrese, vice president for policy at the Center for Democracy & Technology, said that Facebook needs to reveal what it is doing with all of this information.


Some cyber security experts expect to see executives from Google, Amazon, Reddit and Twitter to be called soon to testify on Capitol Hill.

source: Reuters, Bloomberg

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