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Facebook updates data use policy to appease Irish data protection office

Still uses your data to make money
Mon May 14 2012, 13:20

PRIVACY SHREDDING SOCIAL NETWORK Facebook has made changes to its data use policy in order to appease the Irish Data Protection Commission (IDPC).

The IDPC, which oversees Facebook's operations in Ireland, had asked the firm to provide more information on how it uses information. This presumably meant an exercise for Facebook to avoid repeatedly using the word 'advertising'. Erin Egan, chief privacy policy officer at Facebook said the changes, which include providing examples to users, "are designed to help you understand what the Data Use Policy means in practice".

Facebook's changes include providing advice to users to help them understand the myriad of privacy options and an Activity Log to determine what appears on a user's timeline. The firm has also explained how it uses cookies and provided information on how it uses personal data to "operate Facebook, to advertise, and to promote safety and security".

Egan suggested that users have a look at Facebook's proposed updates and pass on their feedback and scheduled a video question and answer session on 14 May. Egan said, "We work on user privacy issues each and every day - it matters. We listen closely to your advice and together we can make Facebook the community we want."

Facebook needs to be seen to be handling privacy concerns as the firm gets closer to becoming a public company. However at the end of the day, Facebook makes money by using its users' data to flog advertising, something that its 10 different privacy, terms and policy web pages cannot hide. µ


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