Facebook Finally Has a Real Response to Privacy Scares
When it comes to intrusions into your privacy, you’re not just battling one threat from one source.
The federal government snoops into your personal information on a daily basis. But data gathering by online companies is just as pervasive.
You might not care if Amazon tracks your buying history. After all, they’ll use your data to recommend products you may actually want. But what about when Google scans your email and places ads to you based on keywords it finds inside?
What about when a social media platform shares your data with third-party companies so that they can market to you more effectively? Facebook is notorious for this. And some of the information they share can be downright scary…
How Much Data Does Facebook Share?
The biggest problem is really due to the “Facebook log in.” This happens when you use Facebook to log into third-party websites and applications, like games and online radio.
Many websites now ask you to log in before letting you post comments, read articles, or use applications. You can usually still choose the option to set up a user name and password, tied to your email address. But Facebook log ins are becoming popular.
If you’re logged into your Facebook account, you can log in to other third party sites with a single click. Instant access.
What you may not realize is that “instant access” goes both ways.
As you’re getting access to the website and its content, that website is getting access to your information on Facebook, including, but not limited to, your friends list.
Facebook applications are another scary prospect. Take the Facebook Messenger App. You can download this application onto your mobile phone and use it like you would the Facebook chat box. You can instant message your Facebook friends without having to launch the full Facebook application on your phone.
That’s fine enough, but the terms of service might alarm you … if you read the fine print. When you put Facebook Messenger App on your phone, it can:
- Connect or disconnect you from your network without permission or warning
- Dial out without your knowledge—this could potentially add charges to your cell phone bill
- Record audio with your phone’s microphone, again without your knowledge
- Take pictures and video with your phone’s camera
- Read your call log
- Access data about your contacts
All of this could be enough to make you quit Facebook for good…
But, here’s the problem… Facebook often provides real-world benefits to users.
For families living far apart, it gives grandparents the chance to be a bigger part of their children and grandchildren’s lives than was possible in the past.
For entrepreneurs, it provides a way to interact with clients and colleagues.
For people of all walks of life, it offers a way to stay connected with people you might otherwise have lost touch with.
Fortunately, market pressure is on the cusp of yielding a solution that will protect your privacy. This new feature will give you a way to use Facebook, its apps, and even its login feature without having to compromise your private data, your connections, or your phone function.
Use Facebook Anonymously
This new feature is called Anonymous log in. It will give Facebook users a way to log in to apps and third-party sites without sharing any data.
Currently, it’s available only for a limited number of apps, but Facebook plans to widen its scope in the coming months.
Eventually, for Facebook users who are willing to share some, but not all of their data, Facebook hopes to offer a log in that gives users line-by-line control of privacy settings.
Overall, this is good news. It’s a step in the right direction for anyone who wants to enjoy what social media has to offer while avoiding the privacy pitfalls often associated with these platforms.
P.S.-The threats to your privacy are getting bigger and bigger. I, for one, am not about to roll and give up, and I know you’re not either. I’m leading by example and am positively delighted to count you among the readers using my savvy strategies to protect your privacy, your finances, your freedom, and your future.
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