Another Facebook fiasco – here we go again

 

facebook privacy disaster From vnunet.com 16/07/08:

Facebook has accidentally revealed personal information about its members.

The social networking site divulged the dates of birth of many of its 80 million active users, even those who had requested that the information remained confidential.

Graham Cluley, senior technology consultant at Sophos, explained that the information was exposed during a public beta test of Facebook's new design.

"I was shocked to see people's full date of birth revealed, even though I knew they had their privacy set up correctly to supposedly hide the information." he said.

I’m not even the slightest bit shocked at this news; in fact, I’m surprised it wasn’t something more serious. With the social networking/web 2.0 wave that has swept the world in the last year and a half, people have thrown all sorts of personal information up on social networking sites without much regard to the consequences.

My gripe here is the principle and not the specific circumstances: revealing someone’s date of birth is hardly the end of the world but let’s not forget, it wasn’t meant to happen. What other personal information that people have entrusted with social networking sites might leak out to all and sundry? This is just the tip of the iceberg, people. It really is.

And BTW, what’s the deal with the new design: it doesn’t look that much different to me. Worst of all, from what I read, it’s going to mean even more Facebook oriented apps and widgets coming down the pike. You mean there weren’t enough already?! Oh great!

Comments

  1. And how, may I ask, you have been able to judge the new fb design? :P

    I don't think this DOB incident is a big deal, actually. It's only displayed to the 'friends' of a person anyway, so... They should have though beforehand who they should add as a friend! :)

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  2. Yeah but people don't act responsibly with social networking sites - that's been my beef with them all along. And the sites just lure people in with the promise of a group e-hug and they get lost in the lovey-dovey-ness and bear their souls and private information in a way they wouldn't have entertained before they came along.

    I pointed out in the post that the DOB wasn't a huge issue - but it shows that personal information that people had intended to be private can leak out.

    And re. seeing the new design, I logged on with my girlfriend's account. With her permission, before you ask! :-P

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  3. Yes, but how did you know the old design so well, having not used FB ever? :P

    I like the poll btw - at first I mistook it for some ad banner!

    ReplyDelete
  4. I've noted the previous design when I've been in the vicinity of people using FB before! I don't personally use FB, though, as I've maintained all along. :-P

    The poll looks a bit tacky, I agree. But I'm shocked you'd think I'd resort to putting ad banners on Law Actually, Andro! :-O

    ReplyDelete

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