World

Facebook's seized files published by MPs

Facebook's seized files published by MPs

Facebook granted some tech firms full access to its user data as it sought to cultivate lucrative business ties with them - long after it said it was dropping the practice because of privacy concerns, according to an explosive cache of secret documents and emails.

Parliament seized the documents from now defunct app developer Six4Three at the end of November during a trip by the company's founder to London.

The UK parliament's select media committee published more than 200 pages of internal Facebook emails it has acquired while probing how the giant was being used to manipulate major election results The UK parliament's select media committee published more than 200 pages of internal Facebook emails it has acquired while probing how the giant was being used to manipulate major election results. "It is not clear that there was any user consent for this, nor how Facebook decided which companies should be whitelisted or not", Damian Collins, member of parliament and committee chair, said.

"Bulls & Bears" panel on how court documents revealed that Facebook considered charging companies for personal user data.

In his memo, Collins highlighted what his committee determines to be the six key findings from the documents.




Facebook touted itself as championing privacy four years ago when it chose to restrict outsider developers' access to data about its users' friends.

The comment was part of a conversation with Lessin about how to generate revenue with the platform, how to use Facebook data to boost those earnings and how to ensure that such a strategy didn't undercut the company's growth.

Facebook had objected to their release.

Collins also alleged that Facebook took aggressive positions against competitor apps by denying them access to any user data.

Damian Collins, head of the committee, added that Facebook shut off access to data required by competing apps, conducted global surveys of the usage of mobile apps by customers possibly without their knowledge, and that a change to Facebook's Android app policy that resulted in call and message data being recorded was deliberately made hard for users to know about. This includes that Facebook tried to hide from Android phone users that it was collecting data about their calls and texts in case it turned into a PR problem. "We've never sold people's data".