FACEBOOK HAS GONE HARD on mea culpa about its part in the Cambridge Analytica scandal.
In case you've taken to a living-under-a-rock lifestyle, the scandal had involved the use of data from 50 million Facebook users by political strategy firm Cambridge Analytica in an attempt to influence voting in the US Presidential Election of 2016.
But Facebook's chief technology officer Mike Schroepfer has now admitted that Cambridge Analytica may have had data on up to 87 million Facebook users; regardless of the number, it shouldn't have had access to any Facebook user data at all.
This has prompted Facebook to take action to limit how much data third-parties can scrape from its social network via legitimate APIs.
"We believe these changes will better protect people's information while still enabling developers to create useful experiences. We know we have more work to do — and we'll keep you updated as we make more changes," said Schroepfer.
But continuing with what would seem like an admission of guilt over the Cambridge Analytica scandal, Facebook founder and big boss Mark Zuckerberg has said his company didn't do enough to prevent the abuse of the harvested data.
"It's clear now that we didn't focus enough on preventing abuse," he said in an interview with the press. "We didn't take a broad enough view of what our responsibility is. That was a huge mistake, and it was my mistake."
"Knowing what I know today, clearly we should have done more," he said.
In fact, Zuck is taking full responsibility for the mistake and said that no Facebook employees have been fired over the scandal, though he still reckons he's the best guy to run Facebook despite this shouldering of the responsibility.
"Life is about learning from the mistakes and figuring out what you need to do to move forward," he said.
But with that came a slightly worrying stance that Facebook will potentially struggle to keep ahead of hackers and people or groups attempting to use its data to manipulate its users.
"You never fully solve security. It's an arms race," Zuckerberg said. "I'm confident that we're making progress against these adversaries, but they're very sophisticated."
You could almost be tempted to feel sorry for Zuckerberg, or at least as much as one can towards a billionaire, as Facebook never actually allowed Cambridge Analytica access to its users' data; the firm got it from an academic supposedly using the data for research purposes.
But if you do happen to feel a slither of sadness for the Zuck, it's worth noting he said the whole scandal and the '#DeleteFacebook' hashtag that did its rounds on Twitter didn't have "any meaningful impact" on the social network, despite there being a good bit of anti-Facebook sentiment circulating the internet.
It almost looks like Zuckerberg is a bit untouchable given he shunned coming over personally to give his take on the Cambridge Analytica scandal to a UK Parliament select committee; perhaps Zuck is just a modern day badass for the moment the nerds inherit the earth. µ
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