Facebook May Have Shared Data of Over 5.6 Lakh Indians with Cambridge Analytica
Data of 70,632,350 users from the United States may have been shared improperly by Facebook with Cambridge Analytica.
Personal information of 562,455 Indian users of Facebook may have been shared with Cambridge Analytica, the social media company said in a statement on April 4. The number of those affected is much higher for the United States, with data of 70,632,350 users being shared.
The numbers of users from other nations who have been affected are: Philippines (1,175,870); Indonesia (1,096,666); United Kingdom (1,079031) and Mexico (789,880). Other countries whose users were impacted are Canada (622,161 users), Vietnam and Australia.
“In total, we believe the Facebook information of up to 87 million people — mostly in the United States — may have been improperly shared with Cambridge Analytica,” Facebook said in a statement.
Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg said that he accepted the blame for the data breach, which has miffed users, lawmakers as well as advertisers. He added that he continues to be the right man to lead the company he created, according to Reuters. “When you’re building something like Facebook that is unprecedented in the world, there are going to be things that you mess up,” Zuckerberg said, while noting that it was essential to learn from past mistakes.
Meanwhile, Facebook Chief Technology Officer Mike Schroepfer, in a blogpost posted on April 4, updated users about changes the platform is making to better protect information.
“Starting on Monday, April 9, we’ll show people a link at the top of their News Feed so they can see what apps they use — and the information they have shared with those apps. People will also be able to remove apps that they no longer want. As part of this process we will also tell people if their information may have been improperly shared with Cambridge Analytica,” Schroepfer said in the blogpost.
He added that these changes will be able to protect people’s information in a better manner, while still enabling developers to create useful experiences. “We know we have more work to do — and we’ll keep you updated as we make more changes,” Schroepfer said.
Earlier, leading advertisers of India, who use Facebook for campaigns, asked the social media platform for clarifications, expressing their apprehensions regarding the Cambridge Analytica data breach scandal. Companies like Nestle, ITC, Unilever, and others use Facebook to promote their products. However, the recent disclosures regarding data breach have made them skeptical about security issues involving the platform.
Zuckerberg apologized for the misuse of personal information and data privacy controversy linked to Cambridge Analytica in full page advertisements in leading newspapers in the United Kingdom on March 25 and in United States on March 26. UK firm Cambridge Analytica has been accused of harvesting data of 50 million Facebook users without their consent and failing to delete it when it was asked to do so by Facebook.