Facebook suspends 200 apps pending further investigation

Ivan Schwartz
May 15, 2018

Facebook has suspended roughly 200 apps suspected of misusing data they have gathered on the social media site, a vice president at the company said on Monday.

Facebook announced in an official blog post that around 200 apps have been suspended for potentially misusing user data. "There is a lot more work to be done to find all the apps that may have misused people's Facebook data - and it will take time,"said Archibong".

Back in March, the world learned that Cambridge Analytica was able to access data from up to 87 million users - the number is the latest estimate provided by Zuckerberg - and use that data to target certain groups of people during the United States presidential election.

First, Facebook performs a "comprehensive review" to identify every app that has access to a large amount of user data. Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg has said that he's sorry it wasn't done sooner, but hasn't explained why the company didn't do such an audit earlier.

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The company did not release the name of the apps it suspended.

Facebook has come down heavily on around 200 apps for misusing user data. Now, the firm's VP of Product Partnerships, Ime Archibong, has posted an update on the situation claiming that the investigation "is in full swing".

In 2014, Facebook changed its policies so developers could no longer access the information of their app users' friends. The second part of the investigation focused on contacting the app creators for interviews and potential on-site inspections of their app.

National Observer asked Facebook how numerous 200 apps were made by Canadian developers, or developed in Canada. "Cambridge Analytica had approached the myPersonality app team in 2013 to get access to the data, but was turned down because of its political ambitions", the report said. This leak provides access to the "Big Five" personality scores of over millions of Facebook users whose identities could be rapidly revealed through an automated process. "We will keep you updated on our progress", the post added. In the next month, we will show everyone a tool at the top of your News Feed with the apps you've used and an easy way to revoke those apps' permissions to your data.

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