Facebook is doing more than talking tough – moves to sue “data grabbing” quizzes
In a move that signals Facebook’s tougher approach to data breaches, the social media giant has announced that it is suing two Ukrainians who are behind a number of “data grabbing” quizzes that featured on its platform. The quizzes in question harvested multiple types of data – pictures, friend lists, and more – without telling users. That’s exactly the kind of privacy issue that Facebook is at pains to demonstrate it has under control.
Facebook’s share price has risen by 29% so far this year
Source: Yahoo Finance
According to Facebook, Andrey Gorbachov and Gleb Sluchevsky, who worked for a company called Web Sun Group, were behind the quizzes in question. With names like “Do people love you for your intelligence or your beauty?” and “What does your eye colour say about you?”, these quizzes misled users about the type and amount of information they were gathering – and Facebook says that they were installed about 63,000 times:
University of Oxford cyber-security expert Andrew Dwyer said that the quizzes gained access to Facebook accounts through browser extensions that users installed – in other words, Facebook’s own verification procedures were being bypassed by the “app ecosystem”. He told BBC News “Fundamentally, this shows the failure of the app ecosystem – where there was little verification of what apps were doing. As the [alleged] malicious activity was outside of the app, the typical review process of verifying the app may not have caught this activity.”
If it’s successful, Facebook’s lawsuit should go a long way to reassuring the public that the company can be trusted with its data. And, of course, it could act as a potent deterrent to scammers looking to profit from others’ information.
Dominion holds Facebook in its Global Trends Ecommerce Fund.
If you would you like to receive the Newsfeeds daily, please click here to sign up now!Help us make this Newsfeed better by rating this article. 1 star = Poor and 5 stars = Excellent
- Click here to print this story: Print
The views expressed in this article are those of the author at the date of publication and not necessarily those of Dominion Fund Management Limited. The content of this article is not intended as investment advice and will not be updated after publication. Images, video, quotations from literature and any such material which may be subject to copyright is reproduced in whole or in part in this article on the basis of Fair use as applied to news reporting and journalistic comment on events.