31 Jan Facebook Comes Under Fresh Attack for its Data-Privacy Practices
JANUARY has been a bad month for Facebook. First came a story showing that the social network has spent years intentionally profiting from, and refusing to refund, accidental purchases made by children. Kids as young as five were spending hundreds or even thousands of dollars on Facebook, according to the Centre for Investigative Reporting, an American non-profit organization, mostly to play games.
Days later, on January 30th, Apple revoked the social network’s developer certificate, a document which lets companies create iPhone apps for internal use, for violating its terms. Facebook had used its certificate to build an app which, once installed, would send all the data on a person’s phone to Facebook, in exchange for $20-a-month, according to a report in TechCrunch. Apple’s revocation broke all of Facebook’s internal apps for Apple phones, including the one which runs the firm’s employee bus program, leaving workers stranded. Sheryl Sandburg, Facebook’s chief operating officer, said that the app had only collected people’s data with consent; in a separate statement Facebook said that data from children had been collected with the consent of their parents.
Article by Economist.com