On Wednesday, Facebook’s CEO Mark Zuckerberg denied vehemently that the social media giant is harvesting users and non-users’ browsing data behind their backs. He insisted that all the data Facebook has on a user can be found in the website’s ‘Download your information’ tool.
Zuckerberg made the claims during the second day of the congressional hearing in the Cambridge Analytica scandal. Congressman Jerry McNerney was curious to know whether users have access to all the data Facebook has on them or if there is something more.
The Facebook CEO’s response, though, seems to be at odds with the company’s policy to track users and non-users online via cookies if they had accessed a Facebook page at least once.
The policy clearly states that users who have a FB account, access the Facebook app or the website, or visit websites that use Facebook-related products like the Like button will have their browsing data tracked. Facebook tracks users “whether or not [they] are registered or logged in,” according to the company.
Browsing History Nowhere to Be Found
However, don’t expect to find your browsing history via the ‘Download your information’ tool. That feature doesn’t include the advertisers that used your personal data to better target their ads, either.
Also, Facebook won’t build an archive of all your images that were posted by your friends, even though the site’s machine learning algorithms can identify your face in every single (group) photo posted on Facebook.
When Congressman McNerney (D-CA) told Zuckerberg that his staffers were unable to find their browsing history in the Download tool and asked him if that data was stored by Facebook someplace else, Zuckerberg replied no.
Congressman, my understanding is that all of your information is included in download your information,
the Facebook boss told Rep. McNerney.
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