Can you trust Facebook with your data, photos, friends and family?

John N Collins

John N Collins

If you are familiar with the history of the company, have seen the movie, “The Social Network”, have read about the millions they have been ordered to pay out for using the photos of children in their advertising, you already know the answer is no.  The founders of Facebook couldn’t trust each other, why should you believe you can trust them with anything you value?

Is your data safe with Facebook?  In 2013 a programmer reported a “Glitch” in the Facebook programming under their “White Hat” program for rewarding folks who report bugs.  The response from Facebook was, “I am sorry this is not a bug.”  So after he reported it according to their rules and they ignored him, he hacked Facebook Founder, Mark Zuckerberg’s account and posted on his wall.  They refused to pay the fellow for pointing out the hole in their security on the grounds that he did not have Mr. Zuckerberg’s permission to post on his wall.  So as the world laughed at Facebook’s faulty security they were too cheap to pay out to the fellow who had tried to quietly let them know.

So in terms of security Facebook has shown that they cannot even protect the data of their founder, Mark Zuckerberg when they were even warned in advance that there was a hole in their system.  That little thing aside, could you trust them to keep your data, photos, friends, and family private?  Well no, of course not!  While never admitting guilt, Facebook has paid millions for “alledgedly” violating peoples privacy, including Facebook “alledgedly” using photos of minors in their advertising without parental permission.  One might suspect that the bottom line is, well, the financial bottom line and that it is not whether or not they broke the law, but whether they can make more money paying the fines and selling your data and using your photos and your children’s photos without your knowledge and consent.

Businesses and organizations often complain that Facebook users who “like” their pages in order to receive updates from Facebook often don’t get those updates and that Facebook pushes them to pay in order for those people to actually receive that information that they have already signed up to receive.  Recently it was revealed that in 2012 Facebook used over 600,000 of its users as guinea pigs by rigging the timeline of some to be more heavily positive and for others to be heavily negative in order to show that those who receive positive posts will be more positive and those who receive negative posts will be more negative.  It would seem a “no brainer” study that wouldn’t need to be tested and to actually perform such a test on hundreds of thousands of people without their knowledge or consent would seem unconscionable.

Now, Facebook is rolling out a new application for its users that requires them to agree to terms that pretty much surrenders all their data  and features on their cell phone over to Facebook’s loving care.  The permissions you agree to when you install the application, in addition to allowing it to data mine your phone, allows it to make calls, send texts, take photos, and record audio and video with the microphone and camera on the phone without further informing you beyond that acceptance when you download the application.

Is it possible for Facebook to program it into your phone to “listen in” on your conversations and then have an ad pop up for a local restaurant that has paid them to be promoted on your timeline?  Sure it is possible!  Is it possible for someone to remotely turn on the camera for a photo or impromptu video?  Sure it is.  Would the nice, caring people at Facebook do such a thing?  Most people would say, “No, of course not!” but they would have said the same thing about Facebook using hundreds of thousands of its users as human guinea pigs.  That Facebook did that is now public knowledge.  If they were willing to play with the emotions/minds of over 600,000 people without their direct knowledge and consent, what games will they play with their users now that they have full access to their phones?  Do you trust Facebook?  Send me a tweet, a post on my Google+ account, and a comment on my Facebook Fan page to let me know what you think and give this article a like, tweet, G+, Instagram, etc. if you found what you read to be interesting and worth reading.

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Weird AKA John Collins

John N. Collins is a writer, photographer, game & coloring book designer and a bad dancer. Any resemblance to the King John character is merely a coincidence. Follow John N. Collins: YouTube Facebook Fan Page Facebook Personal Account Instagram Twitter