Technology

Facebook paid users to track smartphone use

Facebook paid users to track smartphone use”

An investigation by the online news site TechCrunch said the effort, which had been known as the Onavo Project and later rebaptized as Facebook Research, was used to gather data on usage habits.

A detailed TechCrunch report highlights that Facebook has been running a "research" program where it asks users to install its "Facebook Research" VPN app on their device.

"It wasn't "spying" as all of the people who signed up to participate went through a clear on-boarding process asking for their permission and were paid to participate", Facebook said in an email to Barron's.

"Most concerning is the rather lax approach to getting verifiable parental consent for the teens who participated".

The app granted Facebook "nearly limitless access" to the users' device, including records of which apps were installed, location information and the contents of private messages, according to a report by TechCrunch.

Louisiana shooting: Manhunt for 21-year-old after five including parents killed
Fifty-year-old Elizabeth Theriot and her husband, 50-year-old Keith Theriot were found shot on Church Point Road near St. Authorities say he is considered armed and unsafe and was driving a 2004 Dodge pickup, gray and silver in color.

"The app was created to collect data that helps us understand how people use apps, not the content of the messages they send or receive", a spokeswoman told the BBC.

Critical reports about Ovano ultimately led to Apple changing its policy on what kind of data apps can access on a iPhone, forcing Facebook to remove the app from the App Store.

"We designed our Enterprise Developer Program exclusively for the internal distribution of apps within an organization", the spokesperson mentioned in their statement.

But Apple's response also hit some of the basic infrastructure built into Facebook's offices, particularly its headquarters in Menlo Park, California.

"Like many companies, we invite people to participate in research that helps us identify things we can be doing better", the spokesperson told CNBC in an emailed statement.

Osaka wins AO title, takes No.1 ranking
In many cases, such a situation could have sent a player into a freefall, especially a player as young as Osaka. But she fell victim to Osaka's fearless stand-and-deliver groundstrokes in a big-hitting and compelling final.

"I don't think they make it very clear to users precisely what level of access they were granting when they gave permission", mobile app security researcher Will Strafach said Wednesday. He said Facebook's claim that users understood the scope of data collection was "muddying the waters".

Apple didn't immediately respond to a request for comment about Google's Screenwise Meter app.

In the wake of the Facebook VPN scandal, it was recently revealed that Google has also been abusing the same Apple backdoor to collect data from users as young as thirteen.

As of Wednesday, a disclosure form on Betabound, one of the services that distributed Facebook Research, informed prospective users that by installing Facebook Research, they are letting Facebook collect a range of data.

Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg recently penned a 1,000 op-ed in the Wall Street Journal jumping to the defense of his company's business practices. But while it was "protecting" your data, it was also collecting your mobile data traffic and sending it back to Facebook.

Trump Vows to 'Never Back Down' on Border Wall Demand
A top House Republican, Louisiana's Steve Scalise (skuh-LEES'), tweets that Democrats are interested only in obstruction. When Pelosi was the House Minority Leader in years between 2016 and 2018, she opposed the idea of impeaching Trump.

Apple's disciplinary action against the social media giant prohibits Facebook from using the Developer Enterprise Program from distributing apps used by employees, including beta versions of Facebook, Messenger, Instagram, prerelease apps for unlaunched products, and employee-only utilities for transportation around the Facebook campus and lunch menus, an unnamed source told The Verge.



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