Facebook data scandal is a storm that is creating commotion in our minds. After the recent Facebook data scandal, is your online data going to be more secure? Well, to answer it, let’s look at what actually happened with Facebook in a nutshell.
So, Cambridge Analytica, which is a British Political Data Analytics firm, was accused of buying Facebook user data from a Cambridge researcher named Aleksandr Kogan, who is a Psychology Professor at the University of Cambridge. He owns a company named Global Science Research, which made a Facebook app to harvest Facebook user data from whoever downloaded the app.
The intentions, as usual, were purely academic, but instead, this data was later bought out by Cambridge Analytica to build personalized profiles of people and explore mental vulnerabilities. Later it was used to inject information into various channels and information streams, which led to the manipulation of people into seeing or believing things that may not have been true in the first place. This is speculated to have a massive impact in the 2014 US elections, as the app was primarily used to collect data from American citizens. It is estimated that over 87 million user data was collected by App that appeared harmless on the surface.
The main issue, however, isn’t the data leak itself, but rather the clever and sophisticated means of user manipulation on social media. The data collected via the app was used to build political profiles of people and mislead them with false targeted information within the realm of social media, which is later believed to have influenced certain political views of American Citizens right before the elections.
This raises an important question and a general concern – is your Online Identity SECURE and how will this recent event impact it?
If you are still naïve enough to think that your internet freedom is free and Google is a free product, think again. When a service is free, you are the product, and it has held true for Facebook as well as $11 billion in advertising revenue collected last year. Your identity is never truly secure on any platform; as a matter of fact, a lot of other companies work on the similar business models.
Now, this event has had a major impact on the way Facebook allows sharing of user information with 3rd party apps. The user control of information is a lot stricter, and Cambridge Analytica has been banned from Facebook. We need to assess whether the user privacy and information control will finally see a comeback in the mainstream. We can definitely hope so and only then, a sustainable digital environment can be created.
There might be the possible outcomes
- We might finally witness a complete uprising of Internet activists and people that could force the Govt. to take action on user privacy control. This would be actually very good as the internet would get a lot more secure for the end user.
- Other corporate giants might follow suit soon, but the means of delivery of information might see a drastic change.
- Nothing might happen at all. After all, companies are assets at the end of the day, and a nation needs the resources to sustain them.
Thanks for reading!
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