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Can Facebook guarantee privacy of users?





deanhills
Looks as though Facebook is in trouble and doing damage control with regard to issues about privacy. This follows reports that Facebook has been passing along user name and IDs to advertisers (including Google's DoubleClick and Yahoo!'s Right Media) without users' consent. Facebook now says that those privacy loopholes have been plugged. But how can it make a statement like that?

I just find it completely bizarre that anyone should post or respond in Facebook, thinking that their information will be held privately on a very public network and Website. That has to be crazy in the extreme. How can anything that is posted on the Internet be confidential? How could Facebook ever guarantee privacy of its users? Just does not make sense to me at all. Or does it?

Yahoo!News
Nemesis234
what most people dont seem to understand is that facebook was setup to bring targeted advertising to its users. its whole purpose is to bombard users with adverts which are relevant to the user. of course they will sell your information, they want money. if facebook cant sell your details they make less money, so when this new option of "dont sell my info" pops up, you can be damn sure it will be easily missed/ set to "sell my info please" as default option.

i personally dont use it, i have other websites/chatrooms which dont try and screw me for money.
David_Pardy
I've been using it for a few years now, but have never even seen a single ad as I use Firefox + Adblock Plus Smile.

That being said, the privacy issues are a huge concern and they really need to do something about it.

When I first joined, the privacy settings were fairly logical and straightforward, but over time the internal workings of the site became more complex, as did the privacy settings. I went and had a look at them yesterday to update my settings and found there were a lot more things to change than even 6 months ago.

There was a chat transcript posted on the news.com.au website which involved Zuckerman expressing his contempt towards people and their privacy back when he was 19 at University when he first created the page. I am assuming that this attitude is going to be forcibly changed, but hey, these days nobody cares about the privacy of others.
deanhills
David_Pardy wrote:
I am assuming that this attitude is going to be forcibly changed, but hey, these days nobody cares about the privacy of others.
Exactly. For example, not all people who have Government health care insurance are aware that all of their medical information can now be accessed by a number of organizations, unless they work on getting legislation to protect their personal information. What worries me even more than that is people from the outside who can hack into those systems and access the data for devious reasons.
missdixy
deanhills wrote:
David_Pardy wrote:
I am assuming that this attitude is going to be forcibly changed, but hey, these days nobody cares about the privacy of others.
Exactly. For example, not all people who have Government health care insurance are aware that all of their medical information can now be accessed by a number of organizations, unless they work on getting legislation to protect their personal information. What worries me even more than that is people from the outside who can hack into those systems and access the data for devious reasons.


Wow that's scary! I so did not know that! I received Medicaid until I was 18 ahhh now I'm scared about who knows what about me Surprised

And yea, the whole Facebook thing has been on the news a lot and there was this whole group of people on my campus trying to recruit people to go delete their Facebooks and etc. I don't know if I'll delete mine, but, I definitely don't have a lot of information up there about me.
Afaceinthematrix
I do not like the lack of privacy that facebook gives its users. Like all social networking sites, I checked it out at the beginning when it was new. After I was finished checking it out, I tried to delete it. You cannot actually remove your account. You can only "deactivate it" with the option of "reactivating it" at any time. What? I was able to fully remove my myspace with the click of a button by not my facebook? So now they will have my information for all eternity (or until they go out of business in 5-7 years when another competitor takes them out).

What I should really do is reactivate my account and change as much personal info as possible and then re-deactivate it. But I just haven't had the time to do that.

And the reason that I deactivated it in the first place was because of a lack of privacy. I chose all of the privacy options possible - people weren't supposed to be able to find me in search engines. People weren't supposed to be able to see my profile unless they were my friends. Etc. The reason why I did this was because there were certain people I needed to avoid and hide from. Once they actually found me and contacted me, I figured that facebook privacy measures had failed me and so I deactivated my account.
Magicman
I think there might be a way to actually delete your profile, but it's a long and difficult process. I don't know the details at all but you should be able to find it on Google if you really look. I've tried to set my Facebook privacy as high as possible but there are still some things I wish I could change.
airh3ad
You have to considering the level of vitriol spat at Google when Buzz launched, I too am surprised. I can only draw one of two conclusions: either Facebook users aren’t as concerned as Google users about their privacy, or everyone already expects this from Facebook and have exhausted their outrage. For my part, I will be using Facebook even less than I did before, and I hardly used it before. I considered deleting my account, but it is still the only way to easily keep up with a large circle of friends, family and colleagues, unfortunately.
How ever i agree that it seems like the vast number of Facebook users don’t seem to understand what the new privacy settings really mean. Facebook has been really good (in a bad way) of stepping up how much of the personal information they are sharing and doing it in a way that people don’t actually realize what’s being shared.They’ve also buried the opt-ins/opt-outs in numerous areas, so even if you change the privacy settings in one place you may still be opted-in to share your information in another. and also this is more or less the same information made public by Twitter. Are you similarly outraged about Twitter?
deanhills
airh3ad wrote:
Are you similarly outraged about Twitter?
I think Twitter serves something completely different and communication is much less revealing and superficial, given that there is a limitation of almost two lines per "tweet". I don't really have privacy issues with Twitter, but with FaceBook people are posting personal information that probably should be protected. And if Matrix is right and one can't delete your account, that would be really a problem in my opinion.
chatrack
Just like evey social site, facebook also can not keep privacy of its users. I used to feel that it is made for collecting personal informaton and these information is used for advertising in a targeted manner.
So it is better not to express yourself completely in social sites, of couse you can do it in your own blog or your own site
Nameless
deanhills wrote:
Just does not make sense to me at all. Or does it?

Laughing That thar is some good debating.

I think the moral of the story here is that privacy is a moot point on the internet. If you're so concerned about people finding you, why else are you joining a social networking site? [/Generalised, ignorant viewpoint.]
deanhills
Nameless wrote:
I think the moral of the story here is that privacy is a moot point on the internet. If you're so concerned about people finding you, why else are you joining a social networking site? [/Generalised, ignorant viewpoint.]
Good point, and agreed totally, if someone wants to be private, then probably best policy is to stay out of the Internet completely Smile But then there is the pretense of privacy with passwords, and discovery that it is not as private as the pretense would have it ...
Ghost900
I have been a little bothered about how Facebook seems to put Privacy on low priority but I only post info that if the entire world wants to see, let them. I don't have my phone-number or email or anything really personal on it as anytime Facebook makes a privacy update they seem to remove the old (Keep everything Private) setting and so you have to manually change every time.
iman
I think that facebook is already providing good privacy, it's just that many users do not know how to utilize these things.
goutha
I don't think that facebook can guarantee people's privacy. the idea is not to put too much details and personal information, so that facebook will have nothing to reveal. It's so easy...
guissmo
Yeah. It's kinda hard to trust your privacy with one site. Maybe one should not too much information so that it doesn't become a problem.

After all, we were all warned back in the days to be careful of what you put in the Internet. Very Happy
airh3ad
I just share little info on social site like FB.lets just be careful sharing our personal information's.
driftingfe3s
I've never really had a problem with facebook's privacy options. I'm sure we've all seen some attractive person's picture on facebook and tried to see their full profile, but without success because it was completely private.

If you're really worried about your information getting out, don't put them in your profile. I could care less if facebook is using my interests and showing me ads about photography or drawing and making money off of it.

As with everything on the internet, you should just be careful with what you share. With hackers, exploits, and bugs no one can really guarantee privacy.
ankitdatashn
As of now no one can guarantee privacy on the net, ever wonder how does so much spam make into our inboxes, its the bulk emails that are sold to third parties who make us the scapegoat. I also heard that chrome internet browser has privacy issues coz it transmits user data to it's servers, although I cannot confirm how true it is...
furtasacra
Thank heavens, Facebook recently rolled back some of their so-called improvements that I considered privacy violations.

For a while there, interests, friend list, and pages you liked were public information, and that bothered me to the point where I seriously considered deactivating my account.

I didn't want my interests and pages to be out there for anyone on the internet to see; I live in a redneck town, and having my liberal views on display to extremely conservative potential employers was so chilling I ended up deleting just about everything on my profile.

I also have an ex who occasionally stalks and harasses me, and the idea of him being able to see my friend list and groups was pretty alarming. I don't especially want him knowing where I go and who I'm hanging out with.

However, all the stuff that Facebook made public without your permission will STAY public unless you carefully go through your privacy settings and change it back to the way you want it.

I went through and changed ALL my stuff back to "Friends Only" as soon as the options became available, and now the only stuff that's public is my name, hometown, and profile picture, which is all any long-lost friends or family need to find me and send a friend request.
gunkillergun
A lot of things are scary today... that as we move into the digital age, we are more deceived to online "fine print", as well as hacker attacks. It is really messed up that facebook is being more ad based than user based, maybe it will be an advertising hot-spot. But as facebook makes such "amends" they are planning some really tricky nonsense that will annoy and anger everyone.
jmlworld
Facebook changed their public privacy system recently and now people can decide what type of content to show in the public and what type of content to show close friends and what type of content to show no one.

But that doesn't guarantee that advertisers with big pockets will not see what you are intrested and what you are not interested, because as people here already mentioned, Facebook needs money, advertisers need to spend and we (users) are targets, so Facebook will definitely sell your privacy when needed.

I really hate to admit this social media systems are making us fools by using their overrated things, because we things these things are cool.

I don't know anything worse than these so-called social media. They're time consuming and I really get annoyed when I count back the time I spent on Twitter or Facebook. I admin several Facebook pages because, because that will drive clients to my site, but social media is annoying, believe me.

I don't care about the privacy thing and I can live with it whether my privacy is guaranteed or not, though. What strikes me most is the time I spent on Facebook and Twitter.
goutha
I think that at the end users will have what they want. If they will cancel their accounts by thousands, facebook will change its practices.


gunkillergun wrote:
A lot of things are scary today... that as we move into the digital age, we are more deceived to online "fine print", as well as hacker attacks. It is really messed up that facebook is being more ad based than user based, maybe it will be an advertising hot-spot. But as facebook makes such "amends" they are planning some really tricky nonsense that will annoy and anger everyone.
pll
Facebook can't gurantee privacy of users.
No website is able to do such a thing.

IT'S YOUR RESPONSABILITY to guarantee YOUR PRIVACY. If you put your address & credit card numbers everywhere... it's your problem not the problem of Facebook. Wink
Bikerman
All true indeed, BUT
The thing about social networking sites like facebook is that they are used by young kids and inexperienced netties. It is unreasonable to expect them to know much about computer security and therefore the assumption should be that the system is made as secure as possible without them needing to do anything. Facebook didn't want to do this because that would restrict advertisers from contacting people directly.
As a matter of fact, even the new changes don't completely lock-down the account by default - you still have to change it manually if you want to stop the ads.
jmlworld
Bikerman wrote:
All true indeed, BUT
The thing about social networking sites like facebook is that they are used by young kids and inexperienced netties. It is unreasonable to expect them to know much about computer security and therefore the assumption should be that the system is made as secure as possible without them needing to do anything. Facebook didn't want to do this because that would restrict advertisers from contacting people directly.
As a matter of fact, even the new changes don't completely lock-down the account by default - you still have to change it manually if you want to stop the ads.


I agree. We should not say people should set up their privacy preferences they way they wanted, when there are people who don't know what privacy is all about and people who don't know which website they are browsing (see live example here --note the comments-- Very Happy).

Unless the likes of Facebook apply a defaulted restrictive privacy to all their user profiles (which will not happen), many netties will continue becoming victims of the online presence.
app893
I don't think so,and maybe leakhole in the programme.
Arty
No, Facebook can never guarantee privacy.

For example, I saw instructions on how to view a private album on an anonymous message board. (Wink) It involves copy and pasting code from a picture with the user in it.

All she has to do is to tag one of her friends in the picture, and the exploit could be done.

This shows that Facebook can never guarantee privacy. If you don't want it to be seen by potentially everybody, don't put it on the internet.
Insanity
I go with the saying that nothing on the Internet can really be private. The best thing is, if you value your privacy that much, don't put it on the Internet, be it Facebook, your website, your blog, or your photo album. If someone really wants that thing, there are ways to get it. How do you think celebrity sex tapes and such get circulated and leaked? One of the great things (for better or worse) about the web is that there is great anonymity and tons of infomation to be taken, and hard to hide anything, be it government files or compromising pictures.
Nameless
Insanity (bold added) wrote:
One of the great things (for better or worse) about the web is that there is great anonymity and tons of infomation to be taken, and hard to hide anything, be it government files or compromising pictures.

You seem to be contradicting yourself here ...
andysart380
Facebook cannot gaurantee privacy of anyone that is the responsibilty of the user/subscriber. you can choose weather you have to be public or a registered friend to view your personal information. so facebook does not have control of who views your personal information only you can do that.
eday2010
They can't gaurantee privacy, and no one should expect them to. Just like every other websit - and almosteverything in life - it's Use at Your Own Risk.
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