It Is The Users That Give Out Personal Info, Not Facebook

Few months ago, Facebook shuts down some apps of certain 3rd party Facebook App Developers that collect and sell Facebook user personal information. This issue sparked many outrages among users and everyone is very concern how their private information on Facebook will be shared to somebody else. Technically It is against Facebook’s policy for such thing to happen. But recently, Facebook announced that they allow Facebook apps to collect user private information, with the user’s permission. Basically it means that, the 3rd party app developer can have private information because user allow them to take it.

What is the meaning of “user allow them to take it”?

Let us do a quick flash back. Did you ever click the “allow” button on the Facebook app permission screen?

This is the screen will appear everytime whenever a Facebook App need to access your information. The REAL MISTAKE happend because most of the time, users just click the “allow” button without knowing what does it means! They clicked whatever in the process so they can play some farming game or just to know who read their profile last week. Term of service and privacy policy? I doubt they even bother to read whatever that is written in the area which I highlighted.

It can be horoscope, personality test, contest, lucky draw or game

For Example: A horoscope Facebook app captures your birthday so it can feed you the daily horoscope readings. However, it can also capture all other private information, like your address and phone numbers at the same time. It doesn’t matter whether it is horoscope, personality test, contest, lucky draw or game. The moment you click the “allow” button, you shared the info.

Who should be responsible for all these?

There are many articles on blogs, newspapers and websites debating about this issue. Trying to blame the company that buy name lists, the 3rd party developer that sell the user’s info and Facebook that allow such thing to happen. But fundamentally, it is the user’s careless behaviour that allowed all these to happen. The app developer had asked, and users allowed it, so what is there to argue? To be honest, I used to simply click whatever buttons during my earlier days exploring the web.

Is there a way to prevent this?

Help yourself before others help you. The best way is to remove whatever that you don’t share with others in your Facebook account. Or you can remove Facebook apps and resist from adding new ones (hence no permission is given!). In the case that you really want to add certain app or game, adjust your privacy setting and only allow certain people to be able to access the information. If you would like to discuss this issue, feel free to post your comments :)