Tech Discovery: What is Facebook’s data breach, and how might it affect me?

The revelations continue as Cambridge Analytica whistleblower, Christopher Wylie, answered questions earlier today from the Commons Culture Committee in London, England.

Among Wylie’s explosive statements in front of the committee, linking his former employer Cambridge Analytica, a private data analytics and research company, to
Canadian company AIQ.

He says they worked on software based on illicitly obtained data from millions of Facebook users to identify Republican voters prior to the 2016 U.S. Presidential election.

“That is how the algorithms were developed. They spent a million dollars at least on that acquisition project.”

On Monday, the U.S. Federal Trade Commission announced they too are conducting an investigation into the alleged data breach of millions of Facebook users — while on Sunday, March 25th, full-page apologies from Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg were found in major British and American newspapers.

It can get a bit tedious to follow the exact who, what, where and when of these alleged data breaches and their connections to one another.

But why should you really care to understand it?

The ongoing data breach is an example of how third-party apps can essentially create a profile of you, simply based on your likes.

“We exploited Facebook to harvest millions of people’s profiles. And built models to exploit what we knew about them and target their inner demons. That was the basis the entire company was built on,” Wylie said.

According to Wylie’s past interviews, the system built could find your sexual orientation, relationship status, political views, other vulnerabilities and much more.

Facebook is still under fire in headlines today, after news reports allege ICE uses Facebook data to track suspected illegal immigrants.

Facebook’s CEO is now reportedly expected to testify in front of Congress in the coming weeks.

So the question remains: what, if anything, can you do to keep people out of your business on Facebook?

Articles strongly suggest re-evaluating or changing your social media settings.

Check to see the apps you have authorized access to your account, or other social media accounts.

Disable your platform applications and websites.

If you are comfortable with sharing some information, make sure these are through apps, games and websites that you have given your approval to.

Be cautious when sharing personal information online.

Be aware that what you are sharing, can make you a target for political ads, marketing, or any type of influencing.


No Comment

Leave a Reply