According to a report from Symantec, the largest social network, Facebook has inadvertently been obtaining phone numbers from their users without their consent. Over the weekend, Symantec revealed that Facebook’s mobile app was sending individual phone numbers from Android users over the internet to their servers.
Symantec also explained that users were not required to “provide your phone number, log in, initiate a specific action, or even need a Facebook account for this to happen.” Now looking at the app stats over on Google Play, the Facebook application has been downloaded between 100 and 500 million times. Now that does not include the downloads from the Amazon App Store. Symantec also says “significant portion of those devices are likely affected” by this said problem.
A spokesperson from Facebook confirmed that it has investigated the issue and will provide a fix in a future update. Now for the phone numbers that were collected, the company says that it did not use or process the information they collected and have since deleted them from their servers. This is just another reason why many people are beginning to “dislike” Facebook.
If Facebook is really collecting information from us that we did not give to them, it’s going to be a real problem. According to Mashable, last week they found out that Facebook has shadow profiles where they are collecting data from you when you do the “find friends” option to find more friends. So they are getting information that you don’t want them to have, which is a real problem. But this leads us to the debate of which is more scary, Facebook or the NSA? A recent bug exposed the private email address and phone numbers of 6 million users last week which lead to all of us finding out about the shadow profiles, which Facebook has been doing for years.
How many of you are upset by this news about Facebook leaking out all this information? Is it going to lead you to leave Facebook and head to Twitter, Google+, or another social network? Let us know your thoughts in the comments below.