Ever since the Cambridge Analytica data breach scandal made headlines, there has been some new news or statement from Facebook. Now with Mark Zuckerberg’s testimony before Congress is going on, there are new revelations every day. In the first hearing, Zuckerberg told the Congressmen that his own data was also compromised in the Cambridge Analytica Scandal.
Now we here lot more interesting revelations. The most revealing of them all is that Facebook collects user data even if a user doesn’t use Facebook or has ever signed up for the social media network. When New Mexico’s representative Ben Ray Lujan asked Zuckerberg if Facebook maintains a detailed profile of people who never signed up for Facebook, Zuckerberg had no specific answer.
But from what he said, it was clear that Facebook does collect data of non-FB users. Zuckerberg replied that some data related to non-Facebook users is collected for security reasons and to prevent mass scrapping of user data on the platform.
While this was known in tech circles, Zuckerberg’s testimony puts all theories at rest. When Lujan asked Zuckerberg how many data points they have on Facebook and non-Facebook users. The CEO replied that he doesn’t know.
When asked that the term “shadow profiles” is used to refer profiles of non-Facebook users, Zuckerberg said he is not familiar with that.
When asked how a non-Facebook user opt-out of the data collection, Zuckerberg replied, “Congressman, anyone can turn off and opt out of any data collection for ads, whether they use our services or not. But, in order to prevent people from scraping public information… We need to know when someone is trying to repeatedly access our services.”
If you are not a Facebook user Facebook does have a support page titled,”I don’t have a Facebook account and would like to request all personal data stored by Facebook.” But the support page wants you to become an FB member first. If the user doesn’t want to register with Facebook, they are requested to send an email to datarequests@ .