Facebook says there are still "many open questions" regarding user's data usage

Facebook said that there are still "many open questions" regarding the captivity and usage data such as user's Internet Protocol addresses as a portion of its longstanding plans to focus on privacy by messaging and groups.

After stating that Facebook will speak on a number of privacy failures by rebuilding many of its features to highlight smaller groups and transitory and encrypted communication, the company mentioned unanswered questions around so-called metadata and proposed it could be shared with the company's advert department in a letter to Senator Josh Hawley, a Missouri Republican.

According to Kevin Martin, Facebook's vice president for US public policy, this work is expected to take many years, and it is still in its initial stages.

Martin, an ex-FCC chairman, wrote in a letter that the company looks to collect less data, keep it for a short time and hide message content even from the organisation itself but he left open numerous opportunities about the use of the info to increase what the corporation is aware of about users.

Metadata can include information like user's contacts, devices and location, as it is not the actual content of messages.

According to privacy advocates, those companies could still collect valuable information and make inferences that already hold large amounts of data of its users.


The advocates said about Facebook's case that that information would still be profitable in the ad-targeting infrastructure that made Facebook $15 billion last quarter.

Hawley, in his letter to the company, asked what information they would extract when users exchanged messages with advertisers, Mainly if they used a Facebook subsidiary that allows online payments, and whether or not that could be fed back into the advertisement and marketing structure.

Martin responded by saying that the info about the transactions may be used for personalization on the Facebook platform, as stated in the company's data policy.

One of the leading Republican critics of big tech companies, Hawley said that "frankly shocked by Facebook's response."

While Congress maintains to discuss privacy measures that would permit consumers to choose out of data collection carrier through service, Hawley has championed a suggestion that might block all websites from collecting needless information.

Martin said in his letter that Facebook uses metadata to make the social network safer by reducing Spam and fraud, and this would become more valuable once the company cannot see content directly.

Facebook did give some specifics. It stated it planned to encrypt private messages among more than two members, but did not intend to offer entire encryption for the content material shared in groups.

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Source: Bloomberg.

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