‘Facebook has never cared’ about privacy: Cambridge Analytica app developer

A scientist at the University of Cambridge, Kogan developed a quiz app that was used by consulting firm Cambridge Analytica to mine the data of 87 million Facebook users, including their private messages. That data was then used to target political advertisements in the run-up to the 2016 election in the US.

Kogan’s app collected data not just from users who accepted its terms, but from their friends and contacts too. It did this through a feature called ‘Friend Permissions.’ Sandy Parakilas, a former data protection manager at Facebook, told NBC’s Lesley Stahl how this worked:

“The way it works is if you’re using an app and I’m your friend, the app can say, ‘Hey, Lesley, we want to get your data for use in this app, and we also want to get your friends’ data.’ If you say, ‘I will allow that,’ then the app gets my data, too.”

“It seems crazy now,” said Kogan. “But this was a core feature of the Facebook platform for years. This was not a special permission you had to get. This was just something that was available to anybody who wanted it who was a developer.”

According to Kogan, “tens of thousands” of app developers did the exact same thing, until Facebook recently removed the ‘Friend Permissions’ feature after the Cambridge Analytica scandal went public last month.

In a congressional hearing this month, Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg singled out the Cambridge Analytica breach as a once-off incident. He explained that Facebook was in the process of conducting an internal privacy audit, and he expected to find “a handful” of apps improperly harvesting user data, a far cry from the “tens of thousands” Kogan spoke of.

While Facebook’s developer policy forbids app developers from selling the data they gather, Kogan told NBC that nobody from Facebook, to the developers, to the users, ever read this policy.

“Facebook clearly has never cared,” he said. “I mean, it never enforced this agreement.” Parakilas brought these privacy concerns to higher-ups at Facebook, where he said they fell on deaf ears. “I would say that they prioritize the growth of users, the growth of the data they can collect and their ability to monetize that through advertising,” he said.

Facebook “has repeatedly shown that it doesn’t prioritize privacy over the years,” said Kogan. “If your partner was cheating on you and they cheated on you 15 times and apologized 15 times…at some point, you have to say, ‘Enough is enough. Like, we need to make some kind of a change here.”

Kogan is currently banned from Facebook. His co-developer Joseph Chancellor, who helped write the data-scraping quiz app, was hired by Facebook.

Since the Cambridge Analytica data breach went public, Facebook has been hit with a barrage of new scandals, including the news that another analytics firm harvested user data for commercial use; another gathered and leaked data on an additional 48 million users; and that Facebook sent a doctor on a mission to several top US hospitals to convince them to share confidential patient data with the company.

A majority of Americans now believe their personal data is unsafe with Facebook. Six in 10 Americans also think the government should increase regulations on social media and technology companies in general to prevent their private user data from being shared without their consent.

Source Article from https://www.rt.com/usa/424883-facebook-never-cared-privacy/?utm_source=rss&utm_medium=rss&utm_campaign=RSS

Facebook Is Violating Your Privacy via Facial Recognition Technology

On April 6, a coalition of consumer privacy organizations led by the Electronic Privacy Information Center filed a complaint with the Federal Trade Commission, accusing Facebook of violating individual’s privacy via the company’s facial recognition practices. The complaint focuses on changes to Facebook’s policy which went into effect in early 2018, namely the ability to scan user photos for biometric facial matches without consent.

The organizations say that Facebook is deceptively selling the facial recognition technology to users by encouraging them to identify people in photographs. “This unwanted, unnecessary, and dangerous identification of individuals undermines user privacy, ignores the explicit preferences of Facebook users, and is contrary to law in several state and many parts of the world,” the complaint states.

The coalition also claims Facebook’s policy violates the 2011 Consent Order with the Commission, calling the scanning of faces without “unlawful”. The organizations are calling on the FTC to reopen a 2009 investigation of Facebook due to recent revelations regarding Cambridge Analytica accessing millions of Facebook users private data. The Electronic Privacy Information Center has called on the FTC to investigate Facebook’s facial recognition practices since 2011.

“Facebook should suspend further deployment of facial recognition pending the outcome of the FTC investigation,” EPIC President Marc Rotenberg said.

Other organizations participating in the complaint against Facebook include The Campaign for a Commercial Free Childhood, The Center for Digital Democracy, The Constitutional Alliance, Consumer Action, The Consumer Federation of America, Consumer Watchdog, The Cyber Privacy Project, Defending Rights & Dissent, The Government Accountability Project, The Privacy Rights Clearinghouse, Patient Privacy Rights, The Southern Poverty Law Center, and The U.S. Public Interest Research Group.

This is not the first time Facebook has been under fire for their facial recognition technology. As far back as 2015, The Anti Media reported on a lawsuit involving a man who, despite not having a Facebook account, was fighting to get his “faceprint” from the company. The complaint was filed by Frederick William Gullen of Illinois. Gullen’s complaint stated:

Facebook is actively collecting, storing, and using — without providing notice, obtaining informed written consent or publishing data retention policies — the biometrics of its users and unwitting non-users … Specifically, Facebook has created, collected and stored over a billion ‘face templates’ (or ‘face prints’) — highly detailed geometric maps of the face — from over a billion individuals, millions of whom reside in the State of Illinois.

Although no federal law exists to govern the commercial use and collection of biometrics, Illinois and Texas have passed laws designed to protect the public. Illinois’ Biometric Information Privacy Act made it illegal to collect and store faceprints without obtaining informed written consent. The law also made it illegal for companies to sell, lease, or otherwise profit from a customer’s biometric information. Lawsuits filed against Facebook allege the company is violating BIPA because it makes faceprints without written consent.

With Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg facing pressure from the U.S. Congress and public, the company may shift towards privacy oriented practices. However, for the moment, users should be aware that their words and face are owned by Facebook and whoever else they decide to share the data with.


Source Article from https://worldtruth.tv/facebook-is-violating-your-privacy-via-facial-recognition-technology/

Facebook User Shoots Live Footage Of Multiple UFOs In Front Of Her Condo In Baja, Mexico

Next Story

Recent release of multiple Department of Defence videos of UFOs from several countries has sparked more interest in the UFO phenomenon, the latest example came from the United States, with a quick release of three UFOs shot by military pilots.

In all cases, the observed phenomenon displayed characteristics that are not consistent with any type of known technology that any country has within their inventory. All officials involved with the release confirmed their belief that these types of encounters could be extraterrestrial. Most of them (the people involved with the release of the Pentagon UFO videos are with the To The Stars Academywith some very interesting backgrounds if you check them out. 

For anyone who has done research into the phenomenon, they would most likely refer to all of the radar tracking data that’s available in thousands of de-classified documents that speak of these types of military encounters, consistently, for decades.

Something is going on here, as far as what, it’s not quite known. Unfortunately, a lot of people have lost trust in their governments, and it’s always important to question any type of information that they’re putting out. There always seems to be some sort of false information, or a spin on real information to support a political end.

This is the reality of modern day mainstream media.

Some have even speculated that the globals elites intention with regards to UFO disclosure is to weaponize space.

Are these UFOs piloted by extraterrestrials? That’s another discussion within itself, one that I elaborate on in the article linked below:

It’s Official – We Now Know That UFOs or UAP Are Real – So Are They Extraterrestrial or Not?

What’s probably the most intriguing about the phenomenon, apart from actual data, documentation and in some cases, physical evidence, is that hundreds of very high ranking people from within intelligence agencies, like the military and corporations like Lockheed Martin and Bigelow aerospace, have “blown the whistle,” so to speak, on the phenomenon. Many of those people have also experiences that they know or believe that an extraterrestrial or extra dimensional presence is ‘behind the wheel.’

If you’d like to learn more about the ET phenomenon, we’ve published many articles on the topic that go deep into various aspects of this issue that are archived in the exopolitics section of our website.

As per the footage below, remember, videos don’t need to be released via the government for them to have 100 percent credibility. Although it’s nice now to at least have some of those videos, many ordinary people from around the world, like myself, have had UFO experiences, and many have captured that footage on camera.

It’s ok to speculate ponder, and decide for yourself what is real and what’s not, but one thing is for sure, nobody can really deny the existence of UFOs anymore, and our world’s most notable speakers have made it clear that something real is happening here, and it deserves serious attention.

Below is one of those examples, as a woman by the name of Sarah is recording what seems to be a row of mysterious lights in the distance from her condo. It looks extremely similar to the famous phoenix lights incident.

That began with Luke Air Force Base, the media, the National UFO Reporting Center, the Governor’s office, and the police, receiving a number of reports from people in Nevada of a very large craft hovering in the sky. Some people were reporting it as a boomerang formation of lights.

The object (or objects) began moving south towards Arizona where even more people would see it. Again, people were not reporting just lights hovering in the sky, they were reporting an actual solid object, a craft of some sort, spanning the size of one or two football fields. The witness reports detail lights, sometimes multiple lights, in a pattern that ranged from a few all the way up to a dozen, all in some sort of organized formation.

Witnesses reported them as white and in some cases they were orange, red, or yellow. Reports indicate that at some point, the lights moved at very rapid speeds, while at others, they moved slowly and were also reported to hover. Some people described it as a huge, wedge-shaped craft with five lights on it. Some people claim that it passed directly over their heads and even hovered there for extended periods of time. People reported seeing, again, a large solid object, even going into detail about certain features they could spot on the craft.

It was an event witnessed by thousands, with no shortage of home footage and pictures. Kurt Russell, a well known American actor is also a pilot, and on that day he was flying into the city and witnessed this phenomenon first hand. You can read more about that here.

You can read more in-depth about the Phoenix incident in the article linked below:

Former Governor of Arizona Tells The Truth About “The Phoenix Lights.”

The Implications of Such A Phenomena

I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again, the implications of extraterrestrial contact, or the simple knowledge that we are not the only intelligent life-form in the universe, really leave no aspect of humanity untouched. There will be new questions, from history to science and beyond that we might have to take a closer look at.

The biggest change would happen in our own heads, the way it would effect global consciousness would be huge, and it’s interesting because for years, there has been a war on human perception. It almost feels like we’re living in a game, where a powerful group of people use their various methods to have you believing one way or another with regards to certain topics.

Perhaps there are spiritual implications as well? This is another topic that’s going to have to be discussed, as human beings always have the tendency to portray ‘others’ in a negative, fearful manner.

What can we learn about ourselves from this realization?

We discussed this at length in a recent podcast we did with Richard Lawrence who became the Secretary of The Aetherius Society, you can listen to that here.

And the end of the day, it’s a paradigm shift, but it seems it’s a process that is taking it’s time, as it’s a topic that, once open, can never really be closed again.

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Source Article from http://feedproxy.google.com/~r/Collective-evolution/~3/zUCqsVg_QNQ/

These Ex-Spies Are Harvesting Facebook Photos For A Massive Facial Recognition Database

These Ex-Spies Are Harvesting Facebook Photos For A Massive Facial Recognition Database

April 17th, 2018

Via: Fortune:

When Mark Zuckerberg appeared before the House Energy and Commerce Committee last week in the aftermath of the Cambridge Analytica revelations, he tried to describe the difference between “surveillance and what we do.” “The difference is extremely clear,” a nervous-looking Zuckerberg said. “On Facebook, you have control over your information… the information we collect you can choose to have us not collect.”

But not a single member of the committee pushed the billionaire CEO about surveillance companies who exploit the data on Facebook for profit. Forbes has uncovered one case that might shock them: over the last five years a secretive surveillance company founded by a former Israeli intelligence officer has been quietly building a massive facial recognition database consisting of faces acquired from the giant social network, YouTube and countless other websites. Privacy activists are suitably alarmed.

That database forms the core of a facial recognition service called Face-Int, now owned by Israeli vendor Verint after it snapped up the product’s creator, little-known surveillance company Terrogence, in 2017. Both Verint and Terrogence have long been vendors for the U.S. government, providing bleeding-edge spy tech to the NSA, the U.S. Navy and countless other intelligence and security agencies.




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Source Article from http://www.cryptogon.com/?p=52660

The Creepy Business Models of Google and Facebook

The Creepy Business Models of Google and Facebook

April 13, 2018

By Mencken’s Ghost

Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg’s recent testimony in Congress proved one thing:  that members of Congress are so idiotic that they can even make android Zuckerberg look good by comparison.

The idiots missed the fundamental problem with the business models of Facebook and Google:  They’re creepy and intrusive.

Let’s start with Google.

To understand the Google business model, imagine going back in time prior to the Internet to do some research at a public library.  (Note to millennials:  a library is a place where books can be found.)

But this isn’t a normal library.  It is a library that is operated in accord with the Google business model.

Upon entering the library, you are asked to show your library card.  Then as you proceed to the reference section, a creepy-looking library employee follows close behind.  As you open reference books, the creep looks over your shoulder to see what you’re interested in and writes notes on a notepad.

 After you leave the library, the creep contacts advertisers to sell them the notes that he compiled on you, along with your home address.  The advertisers then begin mailing advertisements to you.

The only difference between this imagined library and the actual Google business model is that all of this is done electronically by the actual business model. 

Now for Facebook.

To understand the Facebook business model, picture a large community bulletin board at a meeting place of a large fraternal organization.  (Note to millennials: That would be an old-fashioned bulletin board made of cork, in which notices are affixed with thumbtacks.)  The board is intended for members of the organization to post photos and items of interest about themselves for the other members to see. 

But this isn’t a normal bulletin board.  It functions in accord with the Facebook business model.

When no one is looking, a creep in the employ of the fraternal organization takes information about you from the bulletin board and then sells the information to advertisers, along with your home address.  The advertisers then begin mailing advertisements to you.

The only difference between this imagined bulletin board and the actual Facebook business model is that all of this is done electronically by the actual business model.

There is not much brilliance behind Facebook and Google business models, but there sure is a lot of creepiness and intrusiveness.  The only brilliance is the ability to monetize the snooping and get people to accept it as normal.  After all, the software to collect the data and sort it with algorithms is far from being the epitome of human intelligence, as evidenced by the type of people who gravitate to coding.  It’s a different matter for the artificial intelligence behind self-driving cars and factory robots, or for the software needed to land a rover on Mars.

The employees and leaders of these firms are full of themselves and think they are on a sacred mission, but in reality, they are in a creepy business of snooping on people and hawking information to advertisers; that is to people who are also in the business of snookering the masses.  

Come to think of it, they are no better than members of Congress.

Source Article from https://www.freedomsphoenix.com/Opinion/238338-2018-04-13-the-creepy-business-models-of-google-and-facebook.htm?EdNo=001&From=RSS

Bozell & Graham Column: Zeroing In on Facebook’s Anti-Conservative Tilt

Two days of congressional hearings with Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg underlined how American perceptions of media power are changing. After 2012, Democrats and their media allies oozed over the way former President Barack Obama’s brilliant strategists changed the face of campaigning through Facebook. But in 2016, Donald Trump was elected, and Facebook became a malignant ghetto of “fake news” and inappropriate election manipulation.

Congress is justified in asking how Facebook’s massive popularity could also lead to massive violations of privacy and, potentially, international manipulation in our political process. But there is more to discuss, questions of bias and censorship that the left doesn’t want to cover, and for good reason. It’s guilty of that.

Several Republican senatorsrs underlined conservatives’ fears about what Facebook is becoming now that it’s under pressure from leftist elites to ban free speech. Sen. Ben Sasse asked Zuckerberg how he defines “hate speech,” noting that many young people find the First Amendment allows too much hurtful speech. He couldn’t really answer it. But in his opening statement, he insisted Facebook has to “make sure people aren’t using it to hurt people or spread misinformation.”

Sen. Ted Cruz zeroed in on the hard evidence of Facebook demonstrating a “pervasive pattern of political bias.” Gizmodo reported in 2016 that Facebook insiders revealed the social media giant kept major conservative stories like ones on Conservative Political Action Conference off its “trending” topics for readers. Facebook shut down the “Chick-fil-A Appreciation Day page,” blocked a post by Fox News reporter Todd Starnes, has blocked over two dozen Catholic pages and recently declared the videos of pro-Trump black ladies known as Diamond and Silk “unsafe for the community.”

To his credit, Zuckerberg replied, “I understand where that concern is coming from because Facebook and the tech industry are located in Silicon Valley, which is an extremely left-leaning place.” Just acknowledging that reality caused the liberals to tear their hair out.

But then Cruz asked whether Zuckerberg had ever heard of a Planned Parenthood page being taken down. No. How about a MoveOn.org page? No. Any Democratic candidate pages? No. Nobody’s aware of that happening. But we can suspect that Facebook’s content police have an itchy trigger finger in identifying where conservatives “hurt people or spread misinformation.”

Conservatives are used to the national media excluding our viewpoint or loading up a pundit panel with eight liberals and one marginal Republican. We’re not going to be happy if the social media start hindering us from communicating with one another on what Zuckerberg claims is a “platform for all ideas.”

Zuckerberg recently told the leftist blog Vox that Facebook plans to boost “broadly trusted news sources” like The New York Times and The Wall Street Journal (national media elites) as opposed to looking “down to blogs that may be on more of the fringe.” Would it be wrong to see ourselves in that “fringe”? We are certainly not placing our trust in The New York Times. But the Facebook founder explained they would like to “help these news organizations, drive subscriptions.”

For all of Zuckerberg’s willingness to acknowledge the bias in Big Tech, he needs to acknowledge that conservatives have news outlets, too, like our CNSNews.com. Showing favoritism toward building the profits and influence of liberal media elites is taking sides, not offering a neutral forum for all.

Source Article from https://www.newsbusters.org/blogs/nb/tim-graham/2018/04/14/bozell-graham-column-zeroing-facebooks-anti-conservative-tilt

Cambridge Analytica-linked Kogan collected Facebook users’ private messages

Through Aleksandr Kogan’s “This Is Your Digital Life” app, the Cambridge University researcher was able to collect the data, which was then shared with consulting firm Cambridge Analytica. Data was collected not just from users who installed the app, but from their friends and contacts, too.

In the wake of the scandal, Facebook sent out automatic notifications to affected users. At the bottom of the notification, in fine print, read: “A small number of people who logged into This Is Your Digital Life also shared their own news feed, timeline, posts and messages, which may have included posts and messages from you.”

Kogan downplayed the extent of this snooping, and told the New York Times that private messages were only harvested from a small number of people, likely “a couple thousand.” He also said that the messages were for a separate research project, and were never provided to Cambridge Analytica.

Users granted Kogan permission to do this. Mailbox access was included in the list of permissions they accepted when they installed his app. Kogan insists that only the messages of app users were gathered, not those of their friends. He also told the Times that the data “was obviously sensitive so we tried to be careful about who could access it.”

However, in a 2014 lecture in a Russian university, Kogan told students that through his app, he could predict “basically anything” about a person “quick and cheap,” and that this project had major commercial benefits. Reading users’ messages was central to the project.

“It’s messaging… this is private information, which no one sees,” Kogan told the students. “You can also load all of that. We usually load 3,000 (messages) per person. And there they talk about everything.”

The revelation that third-party apps read users’ explicitly private data comes just days after Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg faced a five-hour grilling in front of the House Energy and Commerce Committee. He repeatedly told the committee that users have full control over who sees their information.

“Every time someone chooses to share, they choose who they want to share it with,” said Zuckerberg.

The Facebook chief also told the panel that his company had introduced new privacy controls, but stopped short of saying he would be willing to alter the company’s business model to better protect user privacy.

Facebook is conducting an internal audit to discover how many third-party apps scraped user data. Zuckerberg told Rep. Jan Schakowsky (D-IL) that such an audit could take “many months,” and that he expected to find “a handful” of breaches from other firms.

Following over a month of privacy scandals at the social media company, a majority of Americans believe their personal data is unsafe with Facebook. Six in 10 Americans also think the government should increase regulations on social media and technology companies in general to prevent their private user data from being shared without their consent.

Source Article from https://www.rt.com/usa/424040-cambridge-analytica-private-messages/?utm_source=rss&utm_medium=rss&utm_campaign=RSS