02 May 2018
Facebook has been hit by a serious accusation for not building up a strong barrier that could have prevented the data breach to happen. The political consulting firm, Cambridge Analytica is alleged to have mined the private data of around 87 million Facebook users to support Donald Trump’s 2016 presidential election campaign. And, Facebook has drawn all the criticism for its alleged inaction to protect its users’ privacy.
Many users showed their anger on Twitter by following the #DeleteFacebook campaign and wanted to leave this platform. However, there are several settings available which you can choose to create some kind of protection around your privacy. This is a serious concern that the Facebook data of millions of users was collected without their concern and got misused eventually.
The users have the right to have the transparency from the company with which they are connected to. But, how actually Facebook handles the data is still a topic of debate. Mark Zuckerberg has already testified in front of Congress where he faced many serious concerns. Before this, he had already promised to expand the GDPR privacy controls worldwide but would these changes give a total control to the users for their privacy? Well, we need to see that. But, for now, you can check if your data was shared with Cambridge Analytica.
Facebook has launched a special page under its Help Center to let its users know if their data was compromised. Zuckerberg promised earlier that the company will bring out a way that could help those 87 million of users in knowing the same. Now, the same is live on Facebook’s site and you just need to log in to your Facebook account to check if your information was shared with Cambridge Analytica.
How to find out if your Facebook data was misused by Cambridge Analytica -
To check this, visit Facebook Help Centre page, titled “How can I tell if my info was shared with Cambridge Analytica?” The box can be seen in the middle of the page titled “Was my information shared” and within the lies that answer. If you haven’t been affected then you will see the message as below.
This says “neither you nor your friends logged in to 'This Is Your Digital Life.'" As a result, it doesn't appear that your Facebook information was shared with Cambridge Analytica.
We have also posted another screenshot (credits: npr.org) that notifies a user that their information was likely "likely shared with 'This Is Your Digital Life.' "
A brief explanation of Cambridge Data scandal -
To those uninitiated, Cambridge Analytica allegedly got this data from Aleksandr Kogan, a University of Cambridge psychologist, who had gained access to information from 270K Facebook members after they downloaded the personality prediction app – This is your Digital Life. Kogan passed this information to Cambridge and broke Facebook’s policies. This data was used by Cambridge to target the delivery of political messages in Donald Trump’s presidential campaign. According to the investigations, at least part of the data collected by Cambridge Analytica has still not been deleted. Facebook learned this in 2015 that the data had been misused and it asked the company to delete it but it had recently learned that the data was never deleted. To this, Cambridge Anaytica defends that they deleted the data and same was informed to Facebook as well.