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Facebook wants to reduce message data collection on Android | Social networks

On Thursday (5), Facebook announced several measures to reduce data collection and restrict third-party access to information from its users. One of the main changes happens in the Messenger and Facebook Lite apps on Android, which fail to obtain detailed call data from the cell phone.

The Cambridge Analytica scandal numbers have also been updated. The number of hollow profiles increased from 50 million to 87 million. Of these accounts, 450 thousand would have been obtained in Brazil. Next, find out about all the changes promised by the social network to work around the problem.

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Data collected from Facebook Messenger should decrease with privacy changes Photo: Marvin Costa / TechTudo

Data collected from Facebook Messenger should decrease with privacy changes Photo: Marvin Costa / TechTudo

How to discover and download everything Facebook knows about you

Facebook's privacy changes are primarily focused on the case of Cambridge Analytica, but involve measures that reach the collection of information from the social network itself. This is the case of recording the history of calls from Android phones through the Messenger and Facebook Lite apps. Although obtaining this data has been going on for years, the situation gained notoriety after a user discovered a list of calls made by his personal cell phone on the Facebook backup.

The data contained numbers of calls made and received, and even the duration of the conversations. The collection of this information was allowed in a more comprehensive way in the past, on cell phones running up to Android 4.1. However, even in more recent versions of the Google system, Facebook continued to obtain the complete telephone history if the user granted the necessary permissions.

Mark Zuckerberg's company says it will stop recording such detailed data from user calls. The promise to save just enough to feed the suggestion tool for new friends from the social network.

We?ve reviewed this feature to confirm that Facebook doesn?t collect the content of messages and will delete all records older than one year. In the future, the application will only upload the necessary information to our servers to offer this feature (from suggestion of friends) and not more comprehensive data, such as the time of calls, explains the company statement.

How to go offline on Facebook Messenger

How to go offline on Facebook Messenger

Facebook has decreased access to user data through apps and services connected to the account. Developers will have fewer permissions to explore events and groups in which the user participates. The same goes for apps made to run on pages or that use automatic login with the Facebook profile.

In most situations, in addition to reducing the amount of data delivered, the company must approve access before granting permissions to the requested information. In contrast, functions such as scheduling posts and importing calendar entries to other apps may be affected.

Facebook's universal search will also be more limited to protect profiles. From now on, it will no longer be possible to search for someone using a phone number or email. The function existed until then as a simple way to find a friend without knowing the person's full name. However, the feature also facilitated the action of hackers who tested information stolen elsewhere to locate individuals on the social network.

In addition, the account recovery tool will undergo changes to reduce the chances of leaking data to unauthorized persons.

The measures join the privacy news already announced by the platform in recent days. this is the case with the app control function to facilitate the identification of services that have access to your information, the cancellation of Facebook's partnership with data companies, and the Instagram API access restriction for third-party applications.

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Facebook will offer tool for checking apps on the social network Photo: Divulgao / Facebook

Facebook will offer tool for checking apps on the social network Photo: Divulgao / Facebook

Facebook is at the center of a privacy breach policy after the revelation that Cambridge Analytica company would have improperly obtained data from 50 million users of the platform. The performance of the political marketing advisory has been under suspicion since 2016, with its involvement in the Donald Trump campaign for the US presidency. However, it is now the methods by which the information was collected have come to the fore.

Cambridge Analytica used a psychological testing game to explore Facebook's security holes and obtain data from both those who agreed to answer the app's questions and everyone on their friends lists. This means that even those who did not accept the terms of use of the app had their data free of charge to the British company.

Facebook now discloses a new number of users affected by the information leak. From 50 million, the forecast has risen to 87 million collected accounts, mostly in the US. Of these, 450 thousand were from Brazilian users. Brazil is in eighth place in the list of countries with the most victims, behind India, Canada, Mexico, United Kingdom, Indonesia, Philippines and the United States.