A cache of internal documents have been published online by a parliamentary committee – against the wishes of Facebook’s chief. The emails show the firm struck secret deals to give some developers special access to user data – whilst refusing others. The files also apparently show that Facebook had made it deliberately hard for users to be aware of privacy changes to its Android app.

Damian Collins MP, the chair of the committee, said ‘I believe there is considerable public interest in releasing these documents. They raise important questions about how Facebook treats users data, their policies for working with app developers, and how they excuse their dominant position in the social media market.’

A spokeswoman from Facebook said ‘we stand by the platform changes we made in 2015 to stop a person from sharing their friend’s data with developers. …the facts are clear: we have never sold people’s data.’

Mr Zuckerberg also posted a personal response on his Facebook page – “I understand there is a lot of scrutiny on how we run our systems. That’s healthy given the vast number of people who use our services around the world, and it is right that we are constantly asked to explain what we do,” he said.
“But it’s also important that the coverage of what we do – including the explanation of these internal documents – doesn’t misrepresent our actions or motives.”

www.bbc.co.uk/technews (5th Dec 2018)