Facebook to soon let users recall messages

09 April, 2018, 01:23 | Author: Simon Thompson
  • One of Facebook’s new Stories tests shows big preview tiles behind people’s profile bubbles

Zuckerberg and other executives have been able to use ephemeral messaging features - much like Snapchat, Signal, and other platforms focused on user privacy - which delete Facebook messages from recipients' inboxes after a certain period of time, features revealed Thursday by TechCrunch and confirmed by Facebook.

According to Facebook, after the 2014 hacking of Sonys emails, the company set up “a number of changes to protect our executives communications. "We should have done this sooner - and we're sorry that we did not", reads a statement by Facebook's spokesperson, cited by the media. "We did so in full compliance with our legal obligations to preserve messages". Interestingly, newer messages from Zuckerberg still remain in inboxes along with some conversations prior to 2014.

Unless, that is, they were from CEO Mark Zuckerberg.

Facebook won't find "every single bad use of data, but what we can do is make it a lot harder for folks to do that going forward", he added.

This may take some time.

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Many have found the revelation that Zuckerberg's old messages were deleted to be a breach of trust along the lines of the Cambridge Analytica debaucle that has plagued the company for weeks. Even if the reason behind the exception holds up, Facebook would have done well to inform affected users, especially since its oft-referenced terms of service only indicate that a message can be deleted if it contains content that violates the community standards.

Facebook's chief operating officer, Sheryl Sandberg, has continued the company's apology tour over its data scandal, acknowledging that Facebook knew Cambridge Analytica had mishandled users' data 2 1/2 years ago but saying the company failed to follow up when the consulting firm said the data had been deleted.

Earlier, Zuckerberg had said that Facebook was enhancing its security features to ensure the integrity of upcoming key elections in countries like India on its platform.

Then, some users who logged in to Facebook through Android devices discovered that Facebook had been collecting information about phone calls they made and text messages they sent. Codacons said just 57 Italians downloaded the Cambridge Analytica app, but that an estimated 214,000 Italians could be affected because the data mined extended to also the users' friends.

After facing mammoth controversy over its users' data breach via British political analytics firm Cambridge Analytica, the Facebook CEO is expected to testify before two Congressional committees next week.

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