back to article Look, we're doing stuff: Facebook suspends 200 super slurper apps

Facebook has suspended 200 apps while it probes whether they misused people's information as part of its investigation into dodgy data dealings. The Social Network launched the probe after revelations about political analytics firm Cambridge Analytica hit the headlines back in March. They centre around apps that accessed user …

  1. djstardust Silver badge

    Seems that

    Idiots on Facebook are still doing these stupid data slurping "quizzes" and have no idea that they are allowing both their own and their "friends" data to be harvested.

    EN.NAMETESTS.COM

    Here's Your Sick Note From Work!

    Bitch, Angel Or Badass?

    What Is Your Irish Nickname?

    What Disease Will You Develop According To Your Name?

    What Bitchy Quote Do You Wish Was Written Across The Sky?

    Funny thing is that the people I see taking part in this shit are supposedly mature adults in their 30s and 40s. (who are then unfriended)

    Jesus!

    1. JohnFen Silver badge

      Re: Seems that

      That's not terribly surprising, though. Let's face it -- anybody who is still using Facebook is not worried about being surveilled, so they would be unlikely to have a big problem with these "quizzes".

    2. iron Silver badge

      Re: Seems that

      "who are then unfriended"

      If you were really bothered about this you would have no one to unfriend because you would have closed your FB account. I've never had a FB account and regularly told my friends they shouldn't either, causing them to look at me like I have two heads so all I have to worry about is the shadow profile. I hope they have a robust process for shadow profile deletion requests in 10 days time.

  2. Barry Rueger Silver badge

    Dubious.

    Yet again a tech company leaps up and proclaims a great love of Corporate Responsibility -- after they've been caught.

    If Facebook (and other companies) actually cared about user privacy they would have built in protections from the ground up before anyone was able to misuse data.

    Or they could have devised a business model in the first place that didn't demand the collection of great volumes of personal data to be profitable.

    The only path forward is to regulate the bastards.

    1. JohnFen Silver badge

      Re: Dubious.

      Facebook (like Google, Microsoft, and so forth) only cares about one thing: profit. None of them give a shit about user privacy, nor will any of them voluntarily take any action that actually prioritizes it. They will, however, make happy talk on the issue if they perceive that their suckers... I mean "user base"... are getting restless.

    2. Mark 85 Silver badge

      Re: Dubious.

      If Facebook (and other companies) actually cared about user privacy they would have built in protections from the ground up before anyone was able to misuse data.

      Well, yes indeed but there's some things to consider. The first is that FB (Ok.. Zuck nor FB per se) wouldn't be as rich as it is today. The second is that there's no such thing in marketing as "bad publicity". If the name is out there, that's good.

      The only path forward is to regulate the bastards.

      Too late for that. Maybe nuking from space but even then... possibly too late.

    3. Richocet

      Re: Dubious.

      Mark Zuckerburg has been quoted in the early days of Facebook (the Facebook) of describing his users as suckers for providing information about themselves to his app. This is hardly a new problem.

      Will he ever grow up and change this attitude?

  3. nuked

    Hang On

    So pre-2014 permissions were sought and granted for TP apps to access my and my friends' data. The terms were updated in 2014, for obvious reasons, but not retrospectively applied?! So in theory I have a whole load of TP apps, all with various permissions based on when I was asked. This doesn't feel like transparency in any adult sense.

  4. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    "Facebook failed to respond to The Register's repeated requests for clarification on how former users would be alerted to the potential misuse of data."

    I believe there is a questioon/answer system to determine this. It goes something like this

    Has my private data been misusedby apps on facebook - to find out use the following procedure

    Q: Do you have a facebook account.

    A1: if reply is "yes" then you private data has been misused

    A2: if reply is "no" then your private data may have been misused... to find out more details pelase open a facebook account the refer to A1.

  5. Vince

    "Facebook failed to respond to The Register's repeated requests for clarification on how former users would be alerted to the potential misuse of data."

    ...well if Facebook acted as responsibly as they should then they wouldn't hold the data of former users in order to have any method years on to directly contact them...

    ...this privacy stuff is difficult right :-)

    1. fidodogbreath Silver badge

      this privacy stuff is difficult right

      The difficulty is striking the right balance of "lip service to the concept of privacy" vs "the financial needs of a global multi-billion dollar corporation whose entire business model is raping privacy."

  6. Bangem

    Now the Reg knows how the Digital, Culture, Media and Sport (DCMS) Committee feels. They're still waiting on FB to answer some questions too.

    Can we have an update on that please vultures!

  7. chivo243 Silver badge

    Just picture it

    Larry, Moe and Curley running in circles flipping switches off, then on again nyuk nyuk...

  8. 89724105618719278590284I9405670349743096734346773478647852349863592355648544996313855148583659264921

    Don't believe the hype!

    It's still piss easy to scrape thousands of Facebook profiles!

  9. opaque

    Every time you do one of these quizzes or add an app for something you accept the terms. And yes it still also includes a list of your friends. If you don't want to share that information then you have the choice of not accepting the terms. It really is as simple as that.

    And yes if we have stupid bloody friends that do that then we need to look at our friends rather than Facebook. I didn't use the Analytica app but a friend did so shared some info. But what info and what impact did it have? I'm British so didn't get to vote in the US Election and my Brexit decision was not changed by anything either. Yes bad that people have my data but what actual impact did it have?

POST COMMENT House rules

Not a member of The Register? Create a new account here.

  • Enter your comment

  • Add an icon

Anonymous cowards cannot choose their icon

Biting the hand that feeds IT © 1998–2019