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Facebook accused of tracking non-users via Android apps

Humans have a propensity to argue over a load of things, however if there is one thing that people will pretty much agree to is the sureness that Social Media giant, Facebook had a dreadful time in 2018. From Data leakage to Data Security flaws, from data manipulation to countless data gathering incidences over the course of year 2018, it was evident that this Social network platform was desperately waiting to kick-start New Year with a clean slate.

However, it seems soaring above the storm of controversies is a hard cookie to crack for Facebook.

According to a recent tech report by Privacy International, several Android Apps appeared to be sending personal information of the users to Facebook. The report was presented at 35C3 hacking conference organized in Germany, which claims that renowned apps like Kayak, Shazam & Yelp are liable for transferring user’s data to Facebook.

Facebook Tracks temp1

The technical experts at Privacy International retrieved data of over 34 Third party Apps & concluded that about 61% of them were sending user’s data to Facebook immediately after the app was opened by users. The gathered information also included if the user doesn’t have an account on Facebook or whether users are logged in to other Social Media platform or not.

The report states that the information that is sent to the Social network platform is generally detailed & sensitive. The data includes user’s device, their time zone, browsing activities, & even religion or health related information.

The report further revealed that Facebook customarily tracks its users, logged-out users & non-users via its Facebook Business Tool. The app developers smartly share user’s data with Facebook using a set of software development tool that enables developers build apps precisely for an operating system. This tool is known as Facebook Software Development Kit (SDK).

After conducting a detailed analysis of the apps, the security researchers condemned Social Media giant for Facebook SDK for Android stating the company uses personal information of users without their consent.

The security researchers contacted Facebook regarding the issue; however the company declared all the allegations to be untrue & underlined that most of the apps use fixed default settings that allow developers to share user’s data with Third party Apps.

The report from Privacy International concludes that without any transparency about the data transferred by Third Party Apps, it is impossible to know how data is being used by Facebook.



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