Facebook-Cambridge Analytica Congressional Hearing Spurs Memepocalypse

Facebook-Cambridge Analytica Congressional Hearing Spurs Memepocalypse

Grilled by U.S. lawmakers for nearly five hours on Wednesday, Chief Executive Mark Zuckerberg acknowledged that Facebook collects "data on people who are not signed up for Facebook", adding that this is done "for security purposes" only. He says that sites that use social plugins (Like and Share buttons), Facebook Login, Facebook Analytics, or Facebook ads and measurement tools record certain information about people.

Last week, Facebook founder and CEO Mark Zuckerberg testified before Congress about a data breach in which Cambridge Analytica obtained the social network users' private info, which was then used to predict and influence the behavior of USA voters in the 2016 elections. Google has a popular analytics service. Amazon, Google and Twitter all have login features.

The social media giant admitted that the several websites and apps make use of Facebook services to make their content and advertisements more relevant and engaging to their users. Facebook allows its users to adjust their News Feed and ad preferences for a more secure and personal experience.

She continued, "But I believe it is nearly certain that the number of Facebook users whose data was compromised through routes similar to that used by Kogan is much greater than 87 million; and that both Cambridge Analytica and other unconnected companies and campaigns were involved in these activities".

The blog post, written by product management director David Baser, is mainly about third-party websites and apps that send data about their users to Facebook, regardless of whether those users have Facebook profiles.

In his testimony to Congress last week, Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg said Facebook plans to make the same settings and controls in Europe available everywhere. Zuckerberg stuck to his response throughout the marathon hearing: that Facebook is conducting an audit on all apps that have access to large amounts of data.

How does Facebook use the data it receives from other websites and apps? Other information comes from "cookies", small files stored via a browser and used by Facebook and others to track people on the internet, sometimes to target them with ads.

Larry Ponemon, the chairman of the think tank, said the Zuckerberg-led Facebook received high scores in the past due to its users spending a significant amount of time on its properties. "We were exploring multiple options for people to manage and monetise their personal data, including blockchain technology". It also stores some data on non-Facebook users too.

Zuckerberg replied, 'Senator, I want to make sure that I get this accurate, so it'll probably be better to have my team follow up with you on this'.

Receiving data about the sites a particular browser has visited can help us identify bad actors.