Skip to main content

Zuckerberg Promises Simpler Facebook Privacy Controls

In an op-ed piece published in the Washington Post, Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg promised the social networking site will offer simplified privacy control in the “coming weeks,” including an “easy way” to turn off all third-party services.

“Simply put, many of you thought our controls were too complex,” Zuckerberg wrote. “Our intention was to give you lots of granular controls; but that may not have been what many of you wanted. We just missed the mark.”

Zuckerberg’s promise comes as the social networking service is facing another firestorm of controversy over the accessibility of its users’ information. Barring privacy gaffes that expose chats and private account information—the most recent comes by way of unique user codes being sent along to advertisers—Facebook’s revamped privacy settings indeed offer a lot of granularity, but have been roundly criticized as being too complex for most people to manage meaningfully. For instance, Facebook’s privacy setting enable users to opt out of sharing personal data with other sites so they can personalize their content for particular users, but Facebook only enables users to opt out on a site-by-site basis. There’s no way for Facebook users to opt out of it entirely.

Lawmakers and regulators have been taking notice of Facebook’s struggles with privacy. Democratic senator Chuck Schumer has asked the Federal Trade Commission to regulate social networking sites and establish a set of guidelines for how they operate; legislation has also been introduced in the U.S. House that would require users explicitly approve any sharing of personal information from a social networking site each and every time it happens. Government regulators in Canada and Europe are also looking into how Facebook handles personal information.

Editors' Recommendations

Geoff Duncan
Former Digital Trends Contributor
Geoff Duncan writes, programs, edits, plays music, and delights in making software misbehave. He's probably the only member…
Reels are about to show up in yet another Facebook feature
A smartphone with the Facebook app icon on it all on a white marble background.

As its answer to TikTok, Reels is clearly a particularly important priority for Meta. Which is why a number of its platforms' recent feature updates often involve Reels. And today's announcement was not exempt from Meta's push to make Reels just as competitive as TikTok.

On Thursday, Meta announced that it would be bringing Reels to Facebook Groups, mentioning it as one of three new ways for users to "to connect over shared interests." Facebook group members and admins will be able to add "audio, text overlay and filters on top of their videos before sharing to bring their stories to life."

Read more
This new malware is targeting Facebook accounts – make sure yours is safe
Facebook logo appears with a hooded figure over a cracked blue background.

In the ongoing barrage of cyberattacks, Facebook users are being targeted by a new version of the Ducktail malware that originally surfaced in July. The first implementation was specifically aimed at Facebook Business accounts, but it has recently become a more widespread danger.

The latest version of Ducktail collects any and all Facebook data available on an infected computer. If it happens to be a business account, payment methods could be discovered, putting your money at risk. Furthermore, Facebook Business data might include billing information and cycles, which could be used to help disguise unauthorized purchases.

Read more
What is a Facebook Pixel? Meta’s tracking tool, explained
Meta, formerly Facebook.

If you have a website for your business and you're wondering how well your ads are reaching prospective customers, you'll probably want to be able to measure that to make sure that the money you've spent on advertising for your business is money well spent. Meta (the parent company of social media platforms Facebook and Instagram) offers a tool that can measure that by capturing how your customers interact with your business' website.

At one point, this tool was known as a Facebook Pixel. But since the technology company's recent rebranding to Meta, the tool also underwent a name change and is now known as the Meta Pixel.

Read more