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Facebook FINALLY answers...

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Posted on July 06 2018

When you think Facebook, you should immediately think SCL Group and Cambridge Analytica and Project Alamo and Jared Kushner and Brad Parscal.

Spicy has a few receipts for you, 37 State Attorneys Generals, found here.

March bipartisanship, found here.

Cook County sues Facebook, found here

Facebook SCL AntiQatar Page, found here

Literally take your pick of entries, found here

Facebook, Cambridge Analytica Big Data, Bigly Problems, found here

Remember the Cambridge Analytica MAN1 Case Study? Found here

 

June 5, 2018 Congress

 

Committee on Energy & Commerce 

 

💙Facebook sends a love letter 💙

 

I betcha thought I forgota about the Q&A?

True story I set up alerts and reminders...but let’s just go ahead and refresh your memory with this Spicy twitter thread:

 

I would recommend that you read this Facebook 20 year FTC Consent Decree, found here. A that will provide you a lot of context and content into the hundreds of follow up questions Congress sent to Facebook in the aforementioned twitter thread.

 

FTC v Facebook Summary:

Due to, one  can assume explosive user and company growth Facebook, numerous privacy and disclosure complaints garnered enough attention that the FTC launched an investigation.

During the course of the FTC v Facebook investigation numerous privacy, specifically user data privacy concerns, gave rise to the FTC mandate that Facebook submit itself to annual audits and expensive privacy protocols. If at any time Facebook violated their FTC Consent Decree, there are stiff penalties. Facebook was hacked Granted it is presumably pocket change for a multi-billion multi-national corporation nonetheless the fines range $1M to $20M per violation.

Let’s NOT forget about the FTC required Facebook Audits.

🚩 

Full Disclosure I am unapologetically highly critical and suspect of Facebook. The reality is that’s unlikely to change for the foreseeable future. Given the epic fubar of Cambridge Analytica. This minithread explains in greater detail...

 

 

 

The reason I recommend you read that FTC Facebook entry is it provides you a greater detailed and it explains the following follow up questions from lawmakers. Particularly the pointed questions surrounding privacy, data protection and 3rd party applications. 

 

 ”...you stated “we have changed a lot of the way that our platform works so that way developers can’t get access to as much information.” But I was asking about default settings related to the amount and type of data Facebook itself collects and uses, not what third parties have access to. So I will ask again. Yes or no, has Facebook changed any default privacy settings to be more privacy protective with regard to the amount and type of information Facebook itself collects and uses?”

 

“...I am giving you another chance to make that commitment. Yes or no, will you commit to changing all the user default settings to minimize to the greatest extent possible the collection and use of users’ data? If you cannot make that commitment, why not?

 

“When a user posts, say, a photo and chooses to share with “friends only,” how does Facebook use that information? Is it incorporated into a user’s interests for advertising purposes in any way?

 

🚩Engel that you would follow up with new AI tools Facebook is deploying “that can proactively catch fake accounts that Russia or others might create to spread misinformation.”  (emphasis added)

 

The default privacy settings go to very specific sections of the binding 20 year FTC v Facebook Consent Decree.

Also the questions pertaining to Facebook, privacy settings and sharing of pictures...I’d like to remind you about Facebook’s Class Action (Judge did in fact certify the class) April 2018 lawsuit,  found here

 

 I now refer you to pages 13 & 14 of the follow up questions to Facebook. In which the House Democrats specifically asked Facebook about racial bias, racial profiling, the “data brokering” from seven, 3rd-party data brokers, cyberbullying, PhotoDNA (prevention of proliferation of child pornography) and CyberBullying. Apparently numerous studies concluded that Facebook & Instagram are the preferred platforms of minors engaging in or the recipient of said cyber-bullying.

 

 

 

Again the Democrats on the House Energy and Commerce Committee sent Facebook hundreds of follow up question shortly after Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg testified. Link to questions can be found here.

 

      • FTC questions found on pages 2, 13, 14, 35, 50 & 51
      • Cambridge Analytica Questions, Pages 1, 2, 9-11, 16, 20, 21, 26-31, 37-41, 50, 57 & 59
      • Russia, literally cut and paste answers throughout the 743 pgs 

 

I will say question 109 (on page 59) just might be one of the most cogent questions asked, it reads in part:

 

Does Facebook have any commercial relationships or any research partnerships with Palantir? If so please describe the type and nature of each.

 

Also there are dozens of questions submitted by actual constituents of Committee Members. And these are pointed questions...pages 51 & 52 respectively.

 

Just before the July 4th Congressional Recess, the House Energy & Commerce Committee uploaded a 748 page response from Facebook.

in the Cover Letter Facebook writes:

“Please note that we received over 2,000 questions from the Senate and House Committees before which we testified on April 10 and 11, 2018. We appreciate the time you gave us to respond to these questions. We did our best to review and answer them in the available timeframe...”

 

 It’s interesting to me, in the April 2018 follow up questions, Congress specifically asked Facebook about its platform’s feature of Facebook live and how it was used to broadcast multiple brutal “gangrape”, gang fights, torturing of animial, child pornography and other untoward streams broadcasting violence  “Facebook Live videos” of the 743 pages...Facebook responded (while NEVER directly addressing the question beyond a profunctory “that’s sad”):

 

We’re deeply saddened when the tools we’ve developed to help people come together and share experiences with their friends and family are misused. When someone does violate our Community Standards while using Live, we are committed to interrupting these streams as quickly as possible and we’ve provided people a way to report violations during a live broadcast.

We will also notify law enforcement if we see a threat that requires an immediate response, and suggest people contact emergency services themselves if they become aware of a situation where the authorities can help. 

 

 

 

Russia IRA - see pages 49, 58-61, 66 & 67, 144, 301, 342 & 343, 380-385...

As a friendly reminder the Washington Attorney General filed suit against Facebook last month. The approach is simplistic yet genius. Based on the updated docket it appears Facebook has retreated as it relates to the State of Washington & allowing political ads on their platform 

 🇺🇸

 

It appears that Facebook, while taking very little accountability does make a few previously undisclosed disclosures (see page 308) which reads in part:

 

...action against the Russia-based IRA. In April, we removed 70 Facebook and 65 Instagram accounts—as well as 138 Facebook Pages—controlled by the IRA primarily targeted either at people living in Russia or Russian-speakers around the world including from neighboring countries like Azerbaijan, Uzbekistan, and Ukraine.

The IRA has repeatedly used complex networks of inauthentic accounts to deceive and manipulate people in the US, Europe, and Russia—and we don’t want them on Facebook anywhere in the world.

Also of note out of 743 pages, Facebook briefly addresses Special Counsel Mueller but once again tries to downplay the fact their platform was hijacked by a foreign hostile adversary and just wants Americans to keep using their platform. Conversely Facebook offers minimal contrition and offers even less in technical information. I’m pretty sure Facebook’s “we were too slow” is the NEW, “don’t regulate us, that’s going to cost us bigly”. What I found most offensive (see pages 651-654) Facebook gives greater weight to actual ad revenue. 

 

 

Again this is the House Energy & Commerce Committee file to Facebook’s 743 page response. I could be wrong but I do not think any other Congressional Committee has released the “full” response. Link found here.

 

Also before you give Facebook a cookie or gold star, you should probably reacquainte yourself with their lobbying efforts. 

 

🚨

 

Data Propria

is Led by Former Cambridge Analytica Employees...like I said Cambridge Analytica NEVER going away nor will the 87M Facebook profiles they stole...

Matt Oczkowski named President of Data Propria, Inc., which will provide clients with data analytics to better understand and communicate with their customers.

Read more: http://m.digitaljournal.com/pr/3792445#ixzz5KUKR0Aca

As you can imagine the House Energy & Commerce Committee, specifically the Democrats on this Committee are having NONE of it. Shortly before the 4th of July Congressional Break, lawmakers send this scathing & pointed letter to Data Propia. The letter reads in part:

 

“You have acknowledged in interviews with press that the work of Data Propria will be very similar to Cambridge Analytica,” the three members wrote to Oczowski.  “The admitted overlap between the personnel and work of Cambridge Analytica and Data Propria raises serious concerns about Data Propria’s practices regarding the collection and use of Americans’ personal information.”

The Democrats are requesting a briefing from Data Propria on its data collection and use practices and policies to address the following topics: 

  • whether Data Propria has any data obtained by Cambridge Analytica from Aleksandr Kogan in its possession;
  • whether Data Propria has any data obtained directly from Aleksandr Kogan or Global Science Research in its possession;
  • whether Data Propria obtained any data about Facebook users through other third-party apps on Facebook (and if so, which apps) or from Facebook through any other means, including Data Propria’s own app on Facebook;
  • whether Data Propria obtained data about consumers through any other internet advertising services or data brokers and if so, which services or data brokers;
  • whether Data Propria obtain Americans’ data that it uses for its political consulting services; and
  • whether Data Propria is providing consumers with notice of how it uses and shares their information.

 

 

 

And lastly, let’s not forget that Facebook literally gave ZTE full access to user information.

🇨🇳 

 

This entry blog entry explains in painstaking particularly why Facebook not only should be regulated to the eyeballs but how they were and still are complicit. Facebook’s arrogance coupled with their reckless applications of privacy policies and non apologies, well it’s a tad bit too late. We’ve already crossed that trust rubicon. Meaning trust is easy to gain but when trust is broken, it is nearly impossible to ever regain. Ergo I have zero trust in Facebook and neither should you. Just to reiterate my assertion, here watch the 5 most awkward moments of Mark Zuckerberg’s Congressional Testimony.

 

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