Facebook changes privacy settings amid data scandal

Facebook changes privacy settings amid data scandal

March 28 (UPI) — Facebook unveiled changes to its privacy settings Wednesday — making it easier for users to control what they share and delete collected data.

In a statement, Facebook said it heard “loud and clear” that privacy settings are difficult to find and access on the social networking site.

“We’re taking additional steps in the coming weeks to put people more in control of their privacy,” Facebook said.

The privacy settings came after it was revealed Facebook shared personal data of nearly 50 million users with Cambridge Analytica, a company accused of using the information to post targeted political ads for President Donald Trump.

“Most of these updates have been in the works for some time, but the events of the past several days underscore their importance,” Facebook said Wednesday.

The new controls will be easier to find and use, Facebook said, with all settings now available to access in a single place rather than spread across nearly 20 different screens.

Facebook said new privacy shortcuts, including information about privacy, security and ads, will be “clearer, more visual, and easy-to-find.”

Users will also be able to download and delete their Facebook data, which includes uploaded photos, timeline posts and contacts added to the account.

“Some people want to delete things they’ve shared in the past, while others are just curious about the information Facebook has,” Facebook said. “So we’re introducing Access Your Information — a secure way for people to access and manage their information, such as posts, reactions, comments, and things you’ve searched for.”

Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg has said he will testify before Congress about the data use. Three congressional committees have requested that he appear.

Facebook is also facing a class action lawsuit that targets Cambridge Analytica for its role in mining the data.